In mid-October of 2021, I received an email from a wonderful gal near Battle Creek who had befriended yet an other FIV+ stray in need of help. The four year old femme-fatale (born in early 2018) is a former mama, having given birth to a litter earlier in the year. All of the kittens were rehomed and she was taken indoors (much to her dismay initially), eventually spayed, and treated for a low-grade herpes viral conjunctivitis and an inflammatory condition known as ‘pillow-foot’. Danielle wasn’t able to keep her permanently but thoughtfully cared for her until we FINALLY had an opening in early February of 2022.
She had known several names during her 2-3 month stint indoors, but I ultimately settled on Radish when I opened the timid girl’s mouth to find bright red, inflamed and infected gums staring back at me, emanating quite the smell as well. I took her to surgery
the day of her arrival and removed, without any resistance whatsoever, ALL of her teeth except her four canines. FIV+ kitties are more prone to significant dental disease than cats not carrying a viral load around within their delicate bodies, so it wasn’t too surprising to me; I am sure it was a shock when Radish awoke from surgery to discover she was darn near toothless! However, she recovered with ease, and within a few days she was ready to head on out to Big Sid’s.
It was slow-going at first, as our bustling sanctuary can be a bit overwhelming to the quieter cats at times, so we set her up in her own comfy area so she could hunker down, settle in, and take in the goings-on around her at a safe distance. Over time, she gradually emerged from the safety of her cocoon and blossomed into the beautiful yet reserved little lady that she is today:
“Radish is still a little shy with people and is not super crazy about the other cats. She doesnt mind being held, but really does prefer to be curled up all comfy in one of the apple crates. She really is a super sweet little lady, is a purr machine at times, and I feel she would make the perfect little girls cat. Because she isnt too fond of others of the feline kind she would do best as an only cat where she can be spoiled to her hearts content. She loves windows and birdwatching, and is seen at times flipping toy springs around the shelter. And that face?! Need I say anything about how ADORABLE she is?!”
Since Radish is a lover (and not a fighter) she most likely she picked up the virus during an unfortunate mating situation beyond her control, which is a shame, as no one as gentle and demure as this sweet girl deserves to become the victim of an unfortunate circumstance. Her stomatitis (oral inflammation ) and pododermatitis have been controlling wonderfully, so long-term care will be minimal most likely. Give her a cozy bed to snuggle up in, some pets and gentle touches and Radish will be as happy as can be, and will repay your kindness with purrs and head rubs of gratitude!