In early 2014 a cat named Russell was badly burned in a house fire that destroyed his family’s home.
Russell subsequently spent over a year and a half at a North Carolina Veterinary Clinic recovering from his injuries. The fire burned his face and body, made him lose the tips of his ears, and most tragically of all, his sight in both eyes.
The recovery process was a long and painful one for Russell with him having to undergo over two dozen operations and other forms of treatment.
However, despite his injuries and the ongoing pain, this loving feline spent much of his time making sure the other animals in the hospital felt at home.
During his extended stay at the Animal Hospital, Russell snuggled up with lots of new pals as they arrived, trying to ensure that they felt comfortable as they underwent their own treatments.
“He wants to be friends with every animal,” said Megan Maus, a Vet Tech at Animal Emergency Hospital and Urgent Care. “He’s a very inquisitive cat. A very loving little cat.”
And it didn’t matter what type of animal it was – fawn, dog, hamster or bird, every new arrival was treated the same way. As soon as Russell was able to get close to them, he showered them with affection, sitting beside them so that they did not feel alone.
Most of Russell’s ‘friends’ were dogs as they were what came through the hospital’s doors most frequently.
However, when a fawn arrived, Russell was on hand as always. The baby dear had been discovered on someone’s lawn, and when it became apparent that her mother was not going to come back, she was brought into the clinic for care.
The fawn quickly became the centre of Russell’s world.
As did a stray Labrador that got hit by a car, and later a Chihuahua stray named Roscoe, whose eye was injured after being attacked by another dog.
All of these animals found themselves with a warm fluffy ball of Russell tell help them recover.
Of course, all of these animals were only in the animal hospital for a short while before moving on and leaving Russell behind. However, there were always plenty of newcomers that were in need of the cuddly cat’s love.
The good news is that Russell was finally declared well enough to leave the clinic. His family home had been rebuilt and as of summer 2015, he was back where he belonged.
Thanks to generous donations, Russell’s medical bills were covered throughout.
Russell also enjoyed a little bit of fame too. Adoring fans the world over followed his progress on Facebook and elsewhere, sending their support in gifts and donations.