Cotton was found outside a home in Royal Palm Beach, FL. Joe, the owner of the house, had gone outside to call his indoor/outdoor cat to come for the night. He said Cotton came out of nowhere and started eating from the bowl of food he had for his cat. He said Cotton seemed very hungry, like if he had not eaten in days. He realized cat was suffering from a severe case of mange and it looked like it could not see. Joe ran inside and got a carrier and some food. Cotton was so hungry, that he went inside carrier and Joe was able to trap him there. Joe said that in the past he had seen a white cat around but it had always been at a distance and he could not tell if it was the same cat. He had never gotten this close.
Joe had dogs and a very sick cat indoors and did not want to bring Cotton inside his home. He was afraid Cotton was going to infect his other animals. Joe posted in a local group on Facebook, asking for someone to come and get the cat and bring it to a vet. Some people suggested he brought the cat to Animal Care and Control. Luckily it was late at night and ACC was closed. If he had brought Cotton there, it is very likely that they would have put him to sleep. Nobody in that group offered to help Cotton so a friend tagged me on the post since she knew I had treated other cats suffering from mange. It was very late and I told him I could not go that night but he could bring it to me. Since I was far away from his house and it was very late, Joe decided to keep Cotton in his front porch, inside the carrier, and I was going to pick him up the next day.
Early, the next morning, I drove to pick him up, hoping he was still ok inside the carrier. Fortunately, he was. I transferred Cotton to one of my traps since we were not sure if he was friendly or not. I took him immediately to my vet, Justin Bartlett Animal Hospital, and they confirmed that he was suffering from mange, was very dehydrated and malnourished. His eyes were affected by mange and he could not open them. He had been walking outdoors completely blind! He purred the whole time they were examining him! He received antibiotics, a dose of Revolution and fluids and we went home. Fortunately, I had a spare bathroom where he could stay.
At the vet, they had scanned Cotton for a microchip and they had found one. A friend helped me track the owner but the phones listed were not working. We eventually talked to the owner and she told us that the cat’s name was Lucky. That she and her family had moved and had brought 8 cats from the previous house but Lucky had disappeared shortly after they moved. She did not report him as lost with ACC. She said she was not in a position to help Cotton and asked if I wanted to keep him. I told her I would keep him until he became healthy and we will talk again.
Cotton was very skinny but fortunately, he ate well and was in good spirits. He must have sensed we were trying to help him and he loved to be touched. My husband Don, son Carlos and daughter Elisa, are used to dealing with cats with many illnesses and we knew that if we took some precautions, that we could still touch and love Cotton to help him heal. Cotton is very vocal and he would make noise to let us know that he wanted attention.
Within a few days, the crust on his ears started to fall off but his skin was bright pink for some days. We put Coconut oil to soothe his skin and gave him lots of water and canned food to keep him hydrated. Cotton stayed hunched over for days and days and seemed very uncomfortable. It was hard seeing him in that condition, knowing only time would heal him. Little by little he started to gain weight. It was a nice surprise to see that he had one blue eye and one yellow eye. His hair started to grow again.
Once he healed completely, the owner decided that she could not have him back and asked me to look for a home for him or to take him to the pound. I told her I would find a good home for him.
Cotton is very vocal. He loves people and searches for attention. He wants to be where you are. He does not seem to very fond of other cats but he tolerates one of my fosters. He loves to be petted but might give some love bites if he gets overstimulated. A house with no other pets and with no children might be a good fit for him. He might also like to go outdoors. He could also be a perfect pet for a business. He would love the attention he might receive from different people.
If people are interested in adopting Cotton, they can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out an application on my new website www.animalfriendsproject.org my family and I became a 501c3 organization last year. We have helped other cats and dogs with similar issues as Cotton. We mainly help in very low income neighborhoods. We are always in need of donations to cover the vet visits and food for the fosters we care for. If you would like to help us, please donate at http://animalfriendsproject.org/please-donate/