When a tiny kitten obviously in need of help sat shivering on the sidewalk, many people passed her by, unable or unwilling to help. But one woman took it upon herself to not only lend a helping hand but to also become the little kitten's caregiver and guardian angel.
Carmen Weinberg of Lake Worth, Florida was visiting a mobile home park one day in May when she noticed a small, terrified ball of fur sitting on the sidewalk. Though the kitten was sitting in front of the mobile home park's office, which many of the residents walked in and out of every day, no one seemed to have stopped for her.
"Dozens of people drive by or walk by that place," Carmen told cat enthusiast website Love Meow. "They saw the kitten and chose to walk away." Fortunately, Carmen herself has some experience with this kind of thing. She is the founder of the Animal Friends Project, a volunteer cat rescue and adoption group, and she was not about to leave this little kitten on her own.
The kitten seemed to have been sitting right in the path of the park's visitors and residents, hoping to be seen. According to Carmen, "She wanted help." So, Carmen sprang into action. When she came near the kitten, the little tabby sprinted under a nearby parked car, but didn't run very far away. Carmen could already see she was in need of medical attention.
She used a humane trap with food in it to lure the kitty out of hiding. When she smelled the food, the kitten immediately came running. She didn't seem the least bit concerned as the trap closed behind her because she was clearly very hungry.
Carmen states that she took the kitten out of the trap soon after to find out the extent of her health problems, but the kitten was immediately comfortable with her. "She completely relaxed, like she was relieved she was finally safe."
The poor, little thing was suffering from fleas and lice, not to mention parasites. Carmen also soon figured out that she was anemic. She took the kitten home and gave her a proper bath, began supplementing her and started treating her various illnesses.
All the while, the kitten was absolutely loving the attention. "She purred the whole time while I was drying her after her bath."
Quickly, the little kitten acclimated to life with Carmen whom she treated as her savior. She even got herself a name: Estrella, which means "star" in Spanish. Over time, Estrella's eyes began to return to their normal clarity, her illnesses cleared up and she was doing better than ever.
Estrella was spayed in June, and Carmen provided updates on her condition for months. While she is currently not available for adoption on the Animal Friends Project website, many other cats in need of a home are.
Carmen's story is enough to remind us why helping an animal in need through fostering, adoption and even just caring for a kitten who has no one is an important part of being a true friend to all animals.