The first thing I saw were her eyes. Large, luminous, the color of sapphires, bright with pain and fear.
My heart broke when I saw them, but nothing like when I saw the puncture wounds and the blood staining her beautiful, fluffy cream-colored fur. I knew she was in for the fight of her life.
The kitten's name was "Buttercup". She couldn't have been more than eight weeks old, twelve at the most: she was a tiny little thing. Apparently a neighbor's dog decided that the hapless little kitten was a chew toy, so he worked her over pretty good, probably shaking her like a ... well, ragdoll.
When the kitten was brought in to our animal sanctuary, we knew we had to do something to help her; if we couldn't, we would probably end up euthanizing her, putting her out of her misery. The kitten didn't make a sound, just lay on the table, trembling from a combination of shock and fear.
My partner started an IV of antibiotics; the kitten didn't even cry out when the needle pierced her skin. I then proceeded to clean the blood from her fur and examined the wounds more closely. Some of them looked pretty deep. If she was to survive, it would definitely be a miracle. Right now, though, it looked doubtful: her vital signs were rather iffy at best. Yet we were determined to do everything possible to help her.
I thought by now I would be used to this sort of thing, seeing animals hurt or abused, but not so much. If anything, my heart only broke a little more each time and it was all I could do to keep from lying my stethescope down and walking away ... permanently. I knew the animals needed me, so that was why I continued to stay and do what I do for a living.
My eyes filled with tears at "Buttercup's" plight, and I whispered a silent prayer to God, asking Him for His guidance and help, so I could give this precious little peanut of a kitten the miracle she so desperately needed.
~To be continued.~