Feeding orphaned kittens can mean opening the door to … who knows what? Many a life, both feline and human, has been forever altered because of someone’s kindness.
Sometimes it happens that an animal taken in as a stray becomes a saving grace. That’s what happened in this story, passed along to me from the newsletter Pet Thoughts, News & Notes from Rebecca Blackbyrd. (Rebecca offers animal communication and energy healing at http://www.RebeccaBlackbyrd.com.)
A Tale of Two Service Cats
Did you know that there are service cats who alert their people to impending medical problems like seizures, low blood sugar, and other medical issues? These cats enable their people to live a more normal life, knowing that they will be alerted when a medical event is about to happen. Some of these cats are certified through the Service Animal Registry of America (SARA).
In March 2010, KVOA News 4 in Arizona featured a story on the service cats of a woman named Marty. Marty has a very rare seizure disorder called “absent seizures,” which cause her to freeze up and be unable to do anything during the course of the seizure. Her longest seizure lasted 30 hours. Unable to tell when her seizures would occur, Marty was confined to her house.
About the same time that Marty was diagnosed, she rescued a little black male cat whom she named Dale. She became concerned about Dale, who would seemingly go crazy at certain times, racing around the house and then back to Marty. Marty took Dale to the vet thinking that the behavior might be the result of a food allergy.
The vet found nothing wrong with Dale and suggested that Marty start logging Dale’s activity for a few weeks to see if they could determine what was causing the uncharacteristic behavior. It soon became clear what was triggering the behavior. Exactly three hours before Marty’s seizures, Dale would become a crazed cat. He was trying to alert Marty that one of her seizures was coming.
Now that Marty knew exactly when her seizures would occur, she could prepare herself in time for them. She said she felt like she had her life back. Dale went everywhere with Marty, giving her enough time to return home before the onset of a seizure.
Unfortunately, Dale got sick and died. Marty was heartbroken and also fearful that her life would return to one of isolation. But Marty had another cat named Lil Bit. Lil Bit had never acted in the same way as Dale, but after Dale’s passing, something very interesting happened.
Lil Bit started to alert Marty in exactly the same way that Dale used to alert her. Lil Bit also reacted precisely three hours before a seizure, so Marty was again able to leave her home. Lil Bit is now a registered service animal through SARA. These cats both enabled Marty to live a more normal life. No matter the species, service animals provide an incredible gift to their people by allowing them to be more independent.
Thanks to Rebecca Blackbyrd for giving permission to excerpt this wonderful story from her newsletter, Pet Thoughts, News & Notes from Rebecca Blackbyrd.
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Chiwah Carol Slater
The Pet Story Passionista
Word Weaver Chiwah
Founder, PetWrites.com, WordWeaver4U.com