LAKELAND - Thanks to the compassion of strangers, an adorable Lakeland kitten will soon find a loving home. The young cat is still recovering from a few lonely, scary nights last week at the bottom of a pipe.
The kitten is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and furry enough to get the name Teddy Bear. At just four weeks old, he's apparently pretty resilient, too.
"The best part is he is starting to show a little more spunk," said Dr. Kim Domokos, Veterinarian at SPCA Florida.
The kitten likely lost that spunk while trapped at the the bottom of a hole that was once used for an old fence post. He spent an estimated three days there.
Brenda Rodrigez heard the kitten meow, but thought it was her neighbor's kitten, until she looked down and he looked up.
"I was so sad," she said. "I was very sad for the little cat."
She took video of the poor guy while waiting for the fire department to arrive. To her surprise, a truck got there in under 10 minutes.
"One of our guiding principles here at the Lakeland Fire Department is compassion," said Rick Hartzog, Assistant Fire Chief. "That doesn't stop with human beings."
Without using any tools, a couple of firefighters managed to pull the cold and hungry kitten to safety.
"He was very emaciated and also dehydrated as well so he just needed some good love and care and a little bit of nutrients," said Domokos.
Today, the young kitten is fitting in perfectly. He's starting to play, develop a personality, and seems to get along with others.
His charming good looks and heart-warming story has also turned him into somewhat of a celebrity.
"It was very cute," Rodriguez said. "So cute I was thinking about keeping it!"
Teddy Bear is still recovering at SPCA Florida. They believe he should be ready to be put up for adoption within a couple of weeks.
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As the afternoon sea breezes kick in, we will see mainly inland showers and storms developing. They will dry up shortly after sunset.