When Scarlett arrived at the sanctuary on Saturday after being picked up from the streets in west Richmond, she was covered in scabs and having such difficulty breathing that it was feared she might not make it through the night.
Hoping to save her, RAPS staff rushed Scarlett to the vet. She was found to have an enlarged heart and asthma, with the sores on her skin apparently being the result of terrible allergies. Fortunately, she seems to be responding well to antibiotics.
Despite Scarlett's tiny size, she's thought to be full grown. And, despite her natural fear from being in such a strange new environment, RAPS staff have found her to be promisingly friendly.
I'm posting about her now in hopes that her health will continue to improve as it has done over the last couple of days, so that these photos will be the "before" pictures to be contrasted with a follow-up of happy, healthy "after" photos in the not too distant future.
Updated September 26, 2011: Our time to get to know Scarlett was much shorter than we had hoped. After initially rallying at the beginning of last week, she quickly went downhill again, showing signs of having great trouble breathing. It seems her little heart just wasn't strong enough, and so RAPS staff took her to the vet to save her from suffering any further.
So... sadly no happy "after" photos to follow the original post. BUT, Scarlett and others like her, the ones we couldn't save, shouldn't be forgotten. Because they all deserve any chance they can be given to pull through. Or, if recovery is too big a miracle to manage, they deserve someplace safe and warm to spend their final days and not to die alone on the streets.
RAPS is short for Richmond Animal Protection Society, a registered charity and operator of a sanctuary which houses and cares for more than 400 homeless or abandoned cats in Richmond, BC, Canada. The Neko Files is a celebration of the sanctuary and all those who live and work there.