Animals are more resilient than we give them credit for. Domestic animals, particularly cats, may seem delicate because pet owners tend to pamper them.
But these modern-day felines are a product of millions of years of evolution that made them surprisingly resilient and adaptable to their surroundings. One great example is the astonishing survival story of this cat.
Way back in January 2019, a cat named Fluffy from Kalispell, Montana, made headlines all around the globe. After being 'frozen alive' in snow, this cat recovered with no lasting injuries.
Cat 'frozen alive' in snow
In January, the temperature in Montana was recorded between -1 (30F) and -8 degrees (17F). During that time, they received about 16 inches of snow.
Fluffy's pet owners came home early to find their cat 'frozen alive' in the snowbank outside of their home on January 31. By the time Fluffy was found, she was unrecognizable after being covered in snow from head to foot. The cat was also unresponsive after being exposed to the extreme temperature outside.
The pet owners, whose identities were not revealed, rushed Fluffy to the nearest veterinary clinic. According to USA Today, Dr. Jevon Clark of the Animal Clinic of Kalispell remarked that it was almost impossible to tell if Fluffy was alive or dead due to the ice and snow covering her entire body.
Upon closer inspection, Dr. Clark was relieved to discover that Fluffy was still breathing faintly.
"You could tell it was a cat when she came in, but really she was just so packed in ice and snow, you couldn't really tell she was alive until you looked at her and started listening to her and realized that she's still alive. Just absolutely frozen."
Fluffy was nursed back to health
When she was rushed to the hospital, Fluffy's temperature was under 90 degrees, which is way lower than a cat's average temperature of 99.5-102.5 degrees Fahrenheit.
Dr. Clark and his team immediately sprung to action to nurse Fluffy back to health. They spent two hours warming her to raise her body temperature slowly, as reported by Deseret News.
When that didn't work, she was taken to the emergency room. They used towels, cage warmers, blow dryers, and even intravenous fluids to save Fluffy. One indication that she would eventually pull through is when Fluffy acted 'crabby' towards the vet.
"She wasn't really responding for about the first half-hour, but then she started at least, acting like she was going to be alive. She's a little bit crabby, and so that's how we knew things were probably gonna be okay, when she started getting crabby with us," says Dr. Clark.
Eventually, Fluffy made a full recovery with no lasting injuries. She was also discharged that same night, and a week later, her pet owners reported that she's back to her usual self.
The owners also clarified that Fluffy has always lived outdoors. They suspect that she suffered from an injury that day, which resulted in her getting stuck in the snowbank.
To prevent this incident in the future, the owners also decided to keep Fluffy inside their residence at all times.
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