Tails of Success
Little Alfred was brought in by a caring individual who fed stray and feral cats in a large colony. When he was found he was cold and unable to walk on his right hind leg. He also had a large wound on his face just between his eyes that was causing some facial deformity. Radiographs showed that the injury to his skull had fractured his frontal sinus on the left side beyond repair. Based on his injuries, an attack by another animal (like a raccoon) was suspected and his prognosis was considered guarded. However, Dr. Jaax wanted to give him a chance and took him home to provide continued care.
That night, his behavior showed that he had the will to survive—along with a TON of personality (a video was taken of Alfie walking around the dog fearlessly). After several weeks of treatments and surgical procedures, Dr. Jaax was able to get Alfie’s infection under control and he is now almost 3 years old! He has loads of personality but can never be accused of stealth—you can always tell where he is by his trademark snort. Alfie is truly an example of the amazing healing capacity of our furry friends. He is truly a pleasure.
Sweetie & Jaax
On March 23, 2016, various local rescuers came together to trap a stray cat named "Sweetie." She had returned to her feeder's yard unable to eat or drink 10 days prior to being caught. Sweetie was rushed to Dr. Jaax, where she had emergency surgery to literally put her mouth back together.
A hard object—such as a golf club, or metal rod—had been used to strike Sweetie with such force that it swiped the side of her mouth, knocked out teeth, shattered the bone under her gums, dislodged her upper gums from the palette, and left her palette dislodged from the roof of her mouth and filled with infection. This cat suffered for over a week with this injury—unable to eat or drink. Bone fragments hanging from her mouth were removed, the open wound was cleaned of infection and other debris, and then the gums were stitched back together to the palette where the bone and teeth no longer existed.
Dr. Jaax made new flaps for her gum and it took nearly 35 stitches to enclose the area. Sweetie ate the day after surgery! She began her recovery two days after her surgery. Sweetie arrived at the rescue scared and weighing just 4.5 pounds. She slowly began to trust again and ate despite great pain. Sweetie fought respiratory infections, yet she persevered and gained weight.
On April 29, 2016, to everyone's surprise, she delivered a female kitten that weighed just a little over 2 ounces. There had been absolutely no signs of pregnancy. The kitten's chances of survival were slim. Sweetie had no milk due to her own trauma and recovery. Her rescuers named the kitten "Jaax" after Dr. Jaax who had saved Sweetie's life. Jaax was syringe fed, and after 10 days began to thrive! Sweetie was an integral part of her kitten's care team—comforting and cuddling Jaax after her feedings. She never let the kitten from her sight. Jaax endured her mama's abuse; no food or water for 10 days; a long surgery to repair Sweetie's mouth along with the anesthesia and pain medications. A little survivor—just like her mom!
The bond between these two remained until Sweetie's death in September 2019, after Dr. Jaax worked around the clock for weeks trying to save her. You can visit Jaax on her Facebook page.
Gary, in sad condition
Gary taking his first steps!
In October 2018, Dr. Jaax met a tiny kitten just 5 weeks old with severe cerebellar hypoplasia. He was in horrible condition--unable to hold up his head. His prognosis was grim yet Dr. Jaax believed that the little guy deserved a chance. With cautious optimism, she took him home.
Little by little over the weeks, he showed progress: holding up his head, taking a few steps, playing, trying to run—all the time purring. Gary would fall down, but get right back up each time. His sweet personality quickly revealed itself. His determination and perseverance never waivered. Today (April 2019), he's 7 months old and just broke 4 pounds! Gary continues to make progress (please check his Facebook album for updates). Given that the cerebellum only comprises 10% of brain mass, but performs over 50% of its functions, Dr. Jaax is very pleased with how far he's come. And he's such a happy little guy! Undoubtedly, a case in point that the smallest lives teach us the biggest lessons.