Fiona and Phantom

Fiona and Phantom were just two more “throw away” cats at a high kill shelter until Good Mews Animal Foundation, a cat rescue in Marietta, GA, swooped in and took responsibility for them and 24 other cats in danger of euthanasia.  Fiona and Phantom had severe health concerns so both were immediately taken to Cat Care of Vinings clinic.

Fiona, a seven-year-old calico with beautiful green eyes, was icteric. Her skin was yellow, indicating an issue with her liver.  Her bloodwork showed elevation of her liver values and she was also anemic.  Urine culture and abdominal ultrasound both came back negative so a diagnosis could not be determined yet.  She didn’t want to eat so she was placed on IV fluids and fed with a syringe until someone had some answers.  After exhausting all possible causes, it was eventually decided she was suffering from Hepatic Lipidosis, a condition caused by rapid weight loss.  In Fiona’s case, it was likely due to malnutrition and/or neglect.

For Phantom, a handsome black 8-year-old, his health concerns were more obvious.  He had an untreated wound on the side of his face which needed dressing and a regimen of antibiotics. In an unrelated issue, his right eye appeared to be bulging and it was likely he was blind in that eye.  The theory was this was caused by a previous trauma, but it would need to be addressed – up to and including removal of the eye. Phantom was also neutered while he received other treatments.  Moreover, he was also diagnosed with intestinal parasites requiring treatment. 

Fiona steadily improved with appetite simulants, liver supplements and subcutaneous fluids.  The biggest concern was her long-term liver health.  Despite her severe neglect, she was a sweet girl who purred loudly, when her caretakers gave her affection.  Eventually, they were able to wean her off the liver supplements.  She would still need to be monitored to ensure continued improvement, but the good news was she was FINALLY ready to be adopted!

Phantom gave them quite a scare when his wound proved to be resistant to antibiotics.  After a bacteria culture put them on the right track, he finally started to heal.  As expected, the vet did recommend his bulging eye be removed.  The original injury had also caused a painful glaucoma so removal offered the best course of treatment for his quality of life.  Almost completely recovered from surgery, Phantom was finally ready for his forever home and was put up for adoption.  His many head butts implied he was feeling much better.

As is the case with rescues like Good Mews, they care for these animals on a very small budget so they reached out to the Ian Somerhalder Foundation for help in saving these kitties.  We were more than happy to provide them a grant to offset the cost of their treatment, especially after hearing they rescued 26 cats from a high-kill shelter. They may not wear capes, but these folks are true heroes.  Kendra Ledlow, Shelter Manager for Mews, had this to say, I think this whole experience confirmed my belief that you really have to speak up for the voiceless. Unfortunately, without rescue groups like ours, cats like Phantom and Fiona do not have a good chance of recovery at most animal control shelters. I'm glad we looked at those two and said, ‘Yes, we will help!’ These two proved that sometimes taking a chance on a situation that seems hopeless might actually turn out better with a lot of love and care."        

Written by Shandra Locken

Edited by Bob Stone

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