In May 2014 Pepper, an 8-week-old kitten, was down to 8 lives after the house he was living in burnt down while he was behind a closed bedroom door. After being rescued by the local fire department and his owners, Pepper was in dire need of urgent medical attention. Luckily, Netcare 911 had been called to the scene, and the team of paramedics concerned – Shaun Paul, Kelsey Shone, Isaac Pillay and Colin Krishnalall – did not hesitate to come to the aid of the soot-covered kitten.
“Pepper was lethargic and was finding it difficult to walk. His eyes were rolling into the back of his head and he had clearly inhaled a lot of smoke. We gave him oxygen and ensured that he stayed warm in order to stabilise him,” says Shaun Paul, operations manager of the Netcare 911 base situated at Netcare Alberlito Hospital.
Some members of the team then took little Pepper to the local vet in Upper Tongaat, who said he would need intensive physiotherapy on his legs over the next few weeks and would probably never fully recover.
However, the diagnosis did not deter volunteer Netcare 911 paramedic Kelsey Shone, who has been giving Pepper regular physiotherapy on his legs over the past few days, which has already resulted in a vast improvement. Kelsey has committed to caring for the lucky feline until his owners are ready to look after him again.
“It’s amazing that Pepper survived the fire because the house was totally destroyed. He is friendly and full of life, in spite of his traumatic experience. The vet is happy with his progress and is impressed with Kelsey’s dedication to the little kitten,” concludes Paul.
This article appeared in the July 2014 issue of Animaltalk magazine. For subscription details visit Coolmags.com