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Lifesaving operation for six-week-old kitten abandoned in park

PUBLISHED: 13:27 07 January 2019

Rebecca the kitten after the operation. Picture: Celia Hammond Animal Trust

Rebecca the kitten after the operation. Picture: Celia Hammond Animal Trust

Celia Hammond Animal Trust

A tiny kitten who was found cold and abandoned in a park on Christmas Day is now thriving after undergoing lifesaving surgery.

The six-week-old cat, named Rebecca, was brought into the Celia Hammond Animal Trust in Canning Town having been found in Beckton Park.

No other kittens or a potential mum were found during a search of the park, leading staff at the centre to believe Rebecca was left there deliberately.

Vets who looked after the kitten when she came in found that she had a congenital condition called pectus excavatum - a deformity of the sternum which compresses the lungs and can cause difficulty with breathing.

Celia said: “She was so cold and not moving when she came in and it wasn’t till a few hours later after we’d warmed her up, bottle-fed her and she started moving that it became clear there was a problem.

“We are now thinking that someone might have realised there was something wrong with Rebecca and may have left her in the park.

“We find that many abandoned animals are injured or ill and we think that people often cannot afford private veterinary treatment and leave them in the hope that someone else will pick them up - or they just don’t care.”

Little Rebecca was placed into an oxygen chamber to try and stabilise her breathing before a surgeon operated on her sternum.

“It was touch and go for a while, and she actually stopped breathing under the anaesthetic,” Celia said.

“For 48 hours we didn’t know if she was going to make it. It’s a major surgery for a six week old cat.”

The kitten will have to remain in a cast for several weeks while her body heals, but is improving on a daily basis.

Celia added that “barring any unexpected problems, Rebecca is going to be fine” and is optimistic she will go on to find a happy family to adopt her.

“We’ll have no problem finding a home for her,” she said.

“We’ve had people from all over the world wishing her well. With all that collective energy she just had to make it.”

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