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Tiny ‘Kitten’ Abandoned On The Street Is Not At All What It Seems

Few scenes are more difficult to watch than a stray animal struggling to survive on its own. Luckily, rescue organizations and good Samaritans frequently step in to save the day. These animal lovers are ready to work tirelessly to give any distressed critter a second chance at life.
One family in Thailand recently did just that when they found a kitten lying in the street alone. Wanting to help, the family called a local wildlife organization to come to the rescue. That was when they learned that this kitten was no ordinary animal…
Recently, a family in Thailand noticed a stray newborn kitten lying in the road in front of their home, hidden underneath a pile of garbage. At the time, they assumed it was just a day old and was in serious jeopardy.
When the family realized that the teeny animal didn’t seem to be able to move, they decided it was best to alert a local wildlife organization. They called upon Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand to come and help.
When rescuers arrived, they noted the kitten’s mother didn’t appear to be anywhere in sight. Time was of the essence—if they didn’t intervene immediately, the newborn animal would surely lose its life…
That was when the family stepped in and admitted something about to the kitten’s origins to the rescuers. They said they’d found its mother in a paddy field a few years back; after raising her in their home for a stretch, they’d released her back into the wild.
Despite this, the mother had grown accustomed to the family and their care, and she’d come to their home often to visit them and give them some love! In fact, her last visit had happened just the day before…
Unbeknownst to them, the mama cat had actually been the one to drop one of her kittens in the garbage. It was possible that she felt the kitten had a better chance of survival with the people who raised her. After listening to the family’s story, the rescuers realized this was no average kitten…
It was actually a member of the South East Asian species of felines known as fishing cats. They’re commonly found living near bodies of water—hence their name—and they primarily subsist on fish.
Once back at the rescue center, the staff from the Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand were able to assess the kitten, whom they later named Simba. They determined that he’d need around-the-clock care. Because he was a fishing cat, his needs would be a bit different…
Based on their assessment, the rescue team determined that poor Simba was malnourished, cold, and in desperate need of milk—all issues that his mother would have normally remedied.
“Today this little kitten is two days old and seems to be a little fighter. For now, he is under round-the-clock care from our vet team,” a rep from Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand explained. Obviously, it was a tough road ahead!
“[He is] spending his time in a special incubator that creates a perfect environment where his special needs can be met,” the representative added. While nothing could replace this kitten’s mother, they hoped their special equipment would help him recover.
Rescuers said it was very important that Simba survived—not only for his own good, but also because fishing cats are vulnerable to extinction. Over the years, these special cats have declined in number largely due to habitat destruction.
“The fishing cat faces a high risk of extinction throughout its range and is thought to be amongst the most vulnerable of the small and medium-sized cats in Southeast Asia,” a representative from Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand explained.
Because Simba’s mother wasn’t able to provide him with the nutrients he required to thrive—and because of his small size—the veterinarians feared he would have a tougher time recovering from his ailments. Would he survive?
“As Simba is so young and very small we cannot for certain be sure that he will [make] it, never mind start planning for his future,” the Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand representative added. Even in the care of trained professionals, the tiny guy was truly on the brink.
Of course, they held out hope that the little kitten would eventually pull through and make a full recovery. “For now, he is good. We will have to wait and see what the coming days will bring,” said some hopeful members of the rescue team.
Their hopes, unfortunately, were to be short-lived. Just two days later, Simba succumbed to his ailments. The team of veterinarians who worked to keep him alive were devastated by the tragic news…
The staff of Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand announced the loss the following morning in a post on their Facebook page. “Sadly, little Simba passed away at 3 a.m. last night under the watchful eye of WFFT vet Aon. RIP little one,” the post read.
Of course, the loss of Simba’s life also represented a major blow to the dwindling population of fishing cats. This only made it more difficult to deal with for the dedicated and caring staff at Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand.
Though Simba didn’t survive in the end, that’s not to say the efforts put forth by the rescue staff weren’t valiant in their own right. His life was short, but he surely touched many lives of the people he met in those few days!
Even though Simba didn’t pull through, it’s reassuring that these rescuers were able to provide him with the specialized care that he so desperately needed. Sad as it is, Simba’s loss will only inspire more people to help the most vulnerable critters on Earth, like fishing cats.
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