The odds were slim
Becky Zielinski, a board member of Hearthside Cats (Geneso, New York), was performing one of her usual trap-neuter-return projects when she stumbled upon a tiny orphaned kitten. She knew that without her help, the 3-week-old would surely die. He was malnourished, covered in fleas and lice, lethargic, and much smaller than he should’ve been at his age.
Becky didn’t hesitate a single second. She brought the kitten to see a vet, then took him home with her. “Teddy’s first day in foster care was a little tough as he would not eat much on his own, and he did not have a lot of strength”, she told Love Meow. But Becky didn’t give up. She continued to give him round-the-clock care, keeping him constantly warm and fed.
A former feral cat now kitten foster dad
Soon, the kitten, which his rescuer named Teddy, started re-gaining strength. He began to purr, and even meow. It was hearing this sweet kitten’s calls that drew Leo, Becky’s resident cat, to little Teddy.
Leo too came from a difficult past. Once living on the streets, he was so sick that vets told Becky it would be best to put him to sleep. “Now two years later, he is happy and healthy and is the ‘Papa Bear’ to all of my abandoned foster kittens”, says Becky. This brave ‘foster dad’ began giving Teddy round-the-clock care alongside Becky, cuddling and grooming him when the little orphan needed company.
Teddy soon chose his favourite carer! “He follows Leo around on the couch and snuggles up to him instantly” Becky told Love Meow. “It’s the next best thing to a ‘mother cat’ that he has”.
Becky can often find Teddy snuggled up or even sleeping in Leo’s fluff. She truly believes Leo gave the little kitten the will to live. Seeing Teddy recovering so fast, she has great hope for his future. It’s incredible what a tremendous difference a little TLC, from humans or animals, can make.