Burnie arrived at the Mdzananda Animal Clinic all by himself. He knew where to find help but he was terrified of humans. For three weeks we could hear Burnie's call. He had crawled under our pharmacy shipping container to hide. No amount of luring could bring Burnie out from under the container. We simply left food for him overnight and hoped that soon he would allow us to help him.
Promise, one of our Animal Welfare Assistants, had tried to lure Burnie out every day. At last Burnie came out and climbed into Promise's arms. It was obvious that Burnie was very frightened of humans - who could blame him?! He emerged from under the container just skin and bones. The one side of his body and the top of his head was completely hairless and covered in burn wounds. We believe that he had been a victim of boiling water.
Unfortunately there is a deeply ingrained superstition and belief in the Khayelitsha community that cats are the carriers of evil spirits or ancestors coming to haunt them. To get rid of the spirit the belief is to throw boiling water on the cat.
We encourage all community members to spread the news about this untrue belief. Pouring boiling water on a cat only produces severe pain for the cat and is animal abuse.
Burnie was admitted to our hospital for one week of intensive care and observation. He was given proper food, cleaned up and treated for his skin wounds. After responding well to this treatment he was moved to the cat ward where he continued his recovery.
Not only did his skin start healing but his soul did too. He soon started loving humans. Whenever one passed Burnie's cage he would run up and rub himself against the front. He just wanted it to be opened so that he could be stroked and cuddled. He loved the attention and even enjoyed playing and nibbling our hands. We could never take a picture of his wounded side as he wriggled around too much always rubbing up against people.
Burnie's physical wounds healed very slowly but very well. He was in our cat ward for three months. During this time we tried to find him a home but no one was interested in him.
Two weeks ago we got in touch with LEAPS, another welfare organisation who works with many adoptions. Sandy from LEAPS was willing to help and she found a foster home for Burnie. The good news is that Burnie was in his foster home for only one week when a lovely lady came to meet him. She fell in lovely and Burnie now has his forever family.
From Agony to true Angel