By Savannah Verdon, RedRover Development and Engagement Coordinator
“Snow was a cat we saw roaming around our neighborhood. Very friendly but skittish. I love pets, always have since I was a little girl. I grew attached to her from the moment she started purring and letting me pet her. I would bring her in some nights to protect her from the coyotes in our area. She was actually happy inside and now she is an only inside cat. She makes me so happy when she meows at me and brings me joy from just seeing her. She means the world to me.”
As someone who had always loved animals, Brittany was drawn to her career as a dog walker, spending her afternoons with furry friends and going home in the evenings to her little mixed breed pup, Canela. When the COVID-19 pandemic first hit, many of her clients canceled their appointments, and more than a year later gave no sign of resuming service. Relying on unemployment benefits to pay her bills, Brittany had little money for much else, and spent a lot of her time at home with her boyfriend and Canela.
With so much time at home, Brittany couldn’t help but notice the little gray cat who wandered around her neighborhood. The cat looked young, and while she showed an interest in Brittany, she was still a little hesitant around humans. But eventually the cat allowed Brittany to pet her, purring and purring like a little engine.
After a little more coaxing, the cat came inside Brittany’s house and realized she was happier with a family than in the streets – warm, fed, and loved. Brittany named the little cat Snow, and they soon settled into a new routine. Snow would follow Brittany as she went to get her food and lay with her as they watched TV together, and Canela was happy to have a sibling to play with.
What Brittany didn’t know when she welcomed Snow into her home was that the young little cat was pregnant. It only became obvious after several weeks when her stomach had grown huge and she waddled from room to room. Brittany figured she would be able to find homes for any kittens Snow had, so she continued to give her the best care she could, including plenty of food for her and her growing babies.
The family was caught off guard when Snow went into labor. Two kittens were born breech (bottom first instead of head first), and passed away soon after. Brittany had no idea how many kittens Snow could be carrying as she continued to labor with little success. On the phone with multiple veterinarians, Brittany was told again and again that Snow would have to have a C-section to get any remaining kittens out, and the surgery would cost several hundred more dollars than Brittany had to her name.
Even prior to the pandemic, Brittany didn’t make much money as a dog walker, so it had been difficult to both keep her bills paid and save money. With only her unemployment benefits as income, she had burned through what she had in savings. Unwilling to leave Snow in pain and risk the lives of any more kittens, Brittany was going to find a way to pay for the C-section no matter what.
“I love this little one and it’s unbearable to watch her suffer and we already lost two of her kittens. My heart aches for her and I just want her to feel better.”
After a local animal organization denied Brittany’s application for financial assistance, they recommended she keep trying and apply for a RedRover Relief Urgent Care grant. She didn’t have to wait long to hear back from RedRover, and with her grant approved, she scheduled Snow to have her C-section as soon as possible. She was hopeful they would be welcoming some tiny kittens into the world soon!
Snow delivered two more kittens via C-section. Though only one survived, Snow and her beautiful baby are both doing very well now. Snow is proving to be a wise and loving mama with Brittany watching over her and Canela to keep them safe. Brittany isn’t sure yet if she will keep the kitten, and she already has two loving homes waiting to adopt if she decides that’s best. For now, she’ll be making sure that Snow is finally at peace in her new home.
Brittany shared this message of gratitude with us:
“I wanted to thank you for the support through this difficult time. Snow and her baby are doing amazing. Baby continues to sleep, meow, waddle, and go back to sleep. Mama is doing amazing also. She just got her new bed and she loves it, and she loves to place her baby there to rest.”
Compassionate people like you are the reason that pets like Snow are still here today with their families. Thank you for being a FurEver Friend and helping us change the lives of animals and the people who love them! We are grateful for the second chances that you make possible. ❤