We have Worked with Vets: 2011- The Story of Thistle the Vet’s story

Glenn has an emergency – would you see it straight away?’ Nobody knew exactly what would arrive – a feral, a cat hit by a car……. We just said of course he can come in. Then Thistle arrived. She was skin and bones, a tiny scrap of kitten, barely moving, pale, dehydrated and freezing.
She’d been found by a local hotel. She just about had a heartbeat. We flew into action, hot water bottles, heat pads and blankets being prepared. But where to put her for those precious seconds while everything was warming up? The Vet stuck her under her top – it was the warmest place!

We made her comfy on a heat pad with heat all around her, and covered her in a foil recovery blanket and bubble wrap. The best way to rehydrate her was to put her on a warmed drip and luck was with us as we managed to place a tiny catheter into a tiny vein. Animals lose heat through their extremities: through feet and ears; so to prevent this we made little booties for her feet and earmuffs out of bubble wrap. After half an hour she was a little more responsive and we rearranged her on her heat pads. It is important not to warm them too quickly and you can get heat pad burns if care isn’t taken. We had done as much as we could and it was now just a waiting game while the warmed drip did its job. No one knew if she would make it.

An hour later her head was moving around and she seemed more aware of us, but less than impressed with the ear muffs! We took off some of the blankets and bubble wrap and she sat up! Hardly believing she was responding so quickly we decided to offer her some food. There was definite interest and a few licks of food off a finger. A slow improvement continued over the day. We transferred her to a small kennel with a litter tray and reluctantly left her late in the evening, hoping she’d still be with us the next morning.

Fantastically, she was up and alert the next morning, and had used her litter tray! She continued to improve in leaps and bounds, and by the end of that second day was eating well and playing. After a few days, she moved in with her fosterers and hasn’t looked back since!

By Mel Taylor of Halian Vets