At just a few months old, Pickle was homeless and in need of emergency care. Kitten playtime had turned to horror when her head was accidentally shut in a heavy door, leaving her with a fractured skull and jaw.
And with her owners unable to afford vet treatment or provide the right environment for the lengthy rehabilitation ahead, badly injured Pickle found herself in Together for Animals member Blue Cross’ care.
Sadly, she is one of a mounting number of pets given up or abandoned as owners struggle to pay for food and vet care due to the cost-of-living crisis.
But Pickle was in the right place.
Despite being in lots of pain, the brave kitten stunned the team looking after her when she started eating. And so, as she was so young and still growing, vets decided that the best way to heal her broken bones was rest, pain relief and plenty of TLC.
Once she was well enough, the kitten went to the Burford rehoming centre.
As she needed medication throughout the night to keep her comfortable, Elisha, Animal Welfare Assistant, stepped in to provide foster care.
“She was a bit of a whirlwind,” says Elisha. “She’s two extremes – very loving and affectionate but also extremely playful. We could easily see how she was injured.”
After 52 days in Blue Cross’ care, Pickle found a home where she could put her painful past behind her. A tiny, barely noticeable deformity in her jaw is the only indicator of her sad start to life.
She now lives with Laura and Scott in London and couldn’t be happier.
Her favourite game is being chased, and when she’s keen to play, she’ll often drop her feather toy at her owners’ feet.
Laura says: “When we first got her, she didn’t know when to stop playing, we had to teach her ways to slow down and stop. She’s much calmer now, but still loves to play.”
Seeing Pickle develop and grow in confidence has been rewarding, says Laura.
“She’s a lot more confident in herself now. She wasn’t happy being left alone and would follow us all over. But now she’s confident and happy staying put. Noises outside used to make her skittish too, but she doesn’t bat an eyelid now.”
But Pickle remains a cuddly, affectionate soul, which makes her even more special to her owners.
Laura adds: “She prefers to be with someone constantly. She likes four to five proper cuddles a day including a long cuddle in bed in the morning to start the day. She’s brought a lot of love into our lives.”