Life started out normally for this sweet munchkin kitten named Dollie. But sadly, for reasons no one can fully explain, it didn’t stay that way for long.
At just 4 months old, Dollie developed a mysterious illness.
“She unexpectedly started feeling quite ill,” Sara-Rose Brenner, of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
(MSPCA), told The Dodo. “Her symptoms were vague at first; she just wasn’t acting like a normal, playful kitten should. Then, things took a turn.”
Parts of Dollie’s body began to essentially die — like her tail, legs and ears.
“We had never seen anything like it,” Mike Keiley, director of adoption centers and programs for MSPCA-Angell, said in a release.
Unfortunately, faced with Dollie’s mounting difficulties, her family made the hard choice to surrender her to the MSPCA. But the little cat’s journey was far from finished.
Dollie’s new caretakers reached out to dermatology specialist Dr. Meagan Painter in hopes of pinpointing her unusual condition. She found it to be typical of a problem called ischemic dermatopathy, which can lead to “tissue death in sensitive areas.”
The diagnosis, however, meant Dollie’s life could be saved.
“We’ll probably never know what caused that reaction, but we diagnosed it in time to prevent progression and save two of her legs that were in danger,” Dr. Painter said. “We did have to amputate her tail and one leg, but we expect she’ll live a long, happy life, something that would not have been possible without extensive teamwork between the hospitals and the clinic.”
But having overcome her health challenges, Dollie still faces one more hurdle — finding a family to love her, scars and all.
The MSPCA announced that after two months of treatment, Dollie was available for adoption into a forever family.
“Dollie’s been with us for a while and it’s time for her to find the loving home that she so desperately deserves after this ordeal,” said Keiley. “We don’t think that she’ll need any specific ongoing care because of this condition, just a family that’s looking for a unique cat and is willing to work with a vet to address any future medical needs.”