Corky the kitten probably used up one of his nine lives in his very young life already.
The young cat was in a Fargo, N.C. shelter, set to be euthanized when Gail Ventzke, Amber Schaffer and Carol Stefonek (co-founders of Cat’s Cradle shelter) arrived at the shelter that Corky was in to pick up two other cats.
The ladies instantly fell in love with Corky and wanted to rescue him from being euthanized. ABC News reports that the ladies immediately took the kitty to get radiographs and were informed they needed to operate right away. Corky was born with a “genetic deformity called bilateral arthrogryposis of the tarsus, where his legs were backwards and overlapping”. But they called a “couple different vets and they didn’t want to touch him,” said Ventzke. Luckily after going to yet another vet, Casselton Veterinary Service, Dr. Dan Burchill agreed to operate on the 8-month-old kitten.
Dr. Burchill said the condition is more common in cattle than cats, and although he had operated on dogs before who had the same condition, Corky was his first cat. While the vet thought he first might have to amputate the cat’s legs completely and put him in a lifelong wheelchair, he found a way to surgically correct Corky’s legs.
The surgery cost $2,500 and the ladies know it was well worth every penny, says Ventzke:
“We’ll fund raise until we cover it. He’s such a great little guy, he’s such a great spirit and he has a great purpose and we’ll do whatever we can to get him back up on his feet.”
Corly is now undergoing rehab, including acupuncture and hydrotherapy, and basically learning how walk, just like a human would. The co-founders (and rescuers) drive 50 miles daily to visit Corky. Dr. Burchill expects Corky to slowly recover and estimates that in six months, he should be full recovered. Although many people have inquired about Corky, Ventzke will adopt him herself and plans to have him certified as a therapy pet to help others recovering from their own surgeries.
If you’d like to donate to Cat’s Cradle, visit their Facebook page.
Image: Cat’s Cradle Shelter
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