Allie the kitten is incredibly special, and not just because she is cute and adorable. This little miracle cat faced insurmountable odds --- a congenital disability that almost ended her life as soon as it began --- and fought to stay alive. With the help of some compassionate rescuers, Allie has a happy future ahead of her!
In South Florida, Samantha Fox of Fox Foster Kittens was rescuing some pregnant cats from a hoarder. One of the cats, Ashleigh, gave birth just a few days later to seven kittens, Allie amongst them. All of the kittens ate well and grew quickly, except for Allie. When Fox took the kitten to the veterinarian, she found out that Allie had a severe birth defect.
Allie had a condition called pectus excavatum, which occurs when the breastbone sinks into the chest cavity. Depending on its severity, this congenital deformity can cause a cat's death. "The vet said it was one of the worst cases she had seen. Normally this surgery is not performed until the kitten is at least 2 lbs or possibly bigger. Allie had to have her first operation under a pound because her organs were literally being crushed by her ribcage," Fox explained.
Poor little Allie's organs were slowly being crushed by her sunken ribcage, and it was difficult for her to breathe. Surgery was the only option, but that normally didn't happen until the kitten was older and heavier. But the condition was moving so quickly with Allie that the vet decided they couldn't wait. Fox said, "Many times kittens will outgrow this defect by the time they are a few months old, and if not will have surgery to correct it. Due to the severity of Allie's defect, we weren't able to wait until she was over 2 lbs."
The odds were slim that Allie would make it through the first surgery, but the courageous little kitten did just that. The next twenty-four hours were critical, and Allie was watched over the whole time. She survived and woke up the next day demanding attention!
"She's a chatty girl, very spoiled. She loves to be carried around and get kisses. She cries until I pick her up," Fox stated. Allie didn't like being alone, so she would cry for one of her caretakers every few seconds. So we were all rotating cuddling her when she was awake," said Fox.
Allie seemed to be improving until a week later when she suddenly had trouble breathing. "The vet then realized she had popped one of her stitches. With the pectus excavatum surgery, multiple sutures are attached to a splint outside the body to pull the sternum into place," Fox explained.
A second emergency surgery was necessary, and Allie appeared to pull through for the second time. Then came terrible news: Allie was brain dead. "She did great until it came time to wake up. It had appeared that she had suffered from lack of oxygen at some point, despite how much high flow O2 they were giving and that she was brain dead and wouldn't wake up," said Fox.
As Allie's caretakers began to mourn, the little kitten who couldn't be stopped surprised them yet again. She opened her eyes and began meowing for their attention! "I was in utter disbelief as was everyone else. No one expected her to wake up ever again. She was up and sassy and breathing on her own," Fox recalled.
For six weeks, Allie has to wear a cast to help reshape her chest, but this little one-pound spitfire is undoubtedly up to the task! Allie is currently resting comfortably with Fox, her foster mom, and learning everything there is to be a proper cat. Thanks to Fox and her friends, Allie has a chance to live a full, happy life. There's still a long road ahead for her, but she has the guts to get through it all.
Want to help with Allie's medical bills? Contact Fox Foster Kittens for more information. Celebrate this little kitten's incredible spirit, then share this story with your friends and family on Facebook.