An abandoned 7-week-old kitten covered in trash and feces was rescued in the middle of the night about a week ago by a Monroe County police officer. After a troubled start and almost a week of treatment, she is now out of the hospital and recovering under another officer’s care.
The Monroe County Sheriff's Office waited to share the kitten’s story on Facebook until Tuesday evening, when they were sure she would make it.
Deputy Bennett Dillon found the kitten, now called Lennie, around 2 a.m. during his patrol of Leonard Springs Nature Park, according to the Facebook post.
She was less than two pounds. Her eyes were bloodshot, and she was barely breathing.
“I didn’t think it was still alive,” Dillon said.
He called his supervisor, who helped him wrap Lennie in a blanket and transport her to Arlington Heights Veterinary Hospital for emergency care. AHVH Technician Lanie Hines said the kitten’s temperature was too low to read when she arrived.
“If anything could pull through this, it would be a kitten,” Hines said she told Dillon that night.
It took about an hour for Doctor Dale Miller to get Lennie to a comfortable place, Hines said. More intense treatment began when the full staff arrived that morning.
Lennie had parasites, fleas and a broken leg, according to the Facebook post. She needed a blood transfusion for her anemia and a splint for her broken tibia.
The entire AHVH staff helped with her recovery, force-feeding her every two hours for the first two to three days and giving her medication every eight hours.
“People were touched by what happened to her, and really wanted her to pull through,” Hines said.
Animal Care and Control took responsibility for the stray kitten the following morning, and have been monitoring her ever since. The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office was updated daily on the kitten’s health and progress.
Emily Herr, outreach coordinator for Animal Care and Control, said Dillon and the AHVH staff saved Lennie’s life.
“She would have died that night,” Herr said.
Aside from a few weeks of bandage changes, antibiotics and pain medications, Hines said staff does not anticipate any long term lasting effects from the trauma. Her treatment was funded by the Monroe County Humane Association.
Lennie is being fostered by another officer until she recovers enough to be put up for adoption.
Situations like Lennie’s happen several times a year, but not to this degree, Herr said.
One can only speculate what brought Lennie to the pile of trash that night.
Hines said she’s not sure other animals in Lennie’s situation would have recovered — but kittens are tough.
“Now she is as spicy as can be,” Hines said.