Critically Injured Cat “Thrown Away like Trash” gets Second Chance at Life

MSPCA-Angell Performs Surgery to Save “Gingerbread”

BOSTON, Dec. 16, 2016 – A one-year-old cat named “Gingerbread” is recovering from life-saving surgery at the MSPCA-Angell after a Waltham Animal Control officer rushed the critically injured animal to its Waltham facility on Dec. 9, the organization announced today.

Thrown out with the Trash
Gingerbread was found locked inside a plastic and metal cat carrier along with a blanket, but with no food or water.  The carrier was left alongside a dumpster in the back of a residence in Waltham.  The city’s Animal Control officer Deanna Gualtieri, responding to a tip from a good Samaritan who found her, rushed the cat to the MSPCA-West where she was stabilized before being taken to Boston.

Both Gingerbread’s jaw and right front leg were shattered, requiring surgery performed by Dr. Emily Ulfelder of the MSPCA’s Angell Animal Medical Center.  “We were able to repair her broken mandible [jaw] but her leg was too damaged to be saved,” said Dr. Ulfelder, who opted to amputate the leg instead.

The nature of Gingerbread’s injuries point toward a run-in with a fast moving car versus physical abuse or a fall from a significant height.  But just who is responsible for abandoning her beside the dumpster is a mystery.  “Fortunately she’s now safe and in our hands,” said Andrea Bessler of the MSPCA’s Shalit-Glazer clinic, in which Gingerbread’s surgery took place on Dec. 12.

“We may never know who left her outside to fend for herself but we’re going to do everything we can to ensure she finds a safe and loving home,” she said.

Gingerbread will require several weeks to recover from her ordeal, after which she will be available for adoption.  Anyone interested in adopted Gingerbread may email for more information.

The Waltham Animal Control Department, meantime, is asking that anyone who may know who is responsible for leaving Gingerbread outside to call the Waltham Police Department at 781-642-6166.

Gingerbread’s surgery was paid for through Spike’s Fund, which helps the MSPCA’s Boston adoption center provide emergency medical treatment for homeless animals in need.

The MSPCA-Angell’s three state-wide animal care and adoption centers take in and place into new homes thousands of homeless dogs, cats and other animals every year.  Gingerbread represents just one of the many animals who arrive every day—and whose futures are brighter as a result of the care they receive.  Readers can contribute directly toward the care of these animals by clicking here.


The MSPCA-Angell is a national and international leader in animal protection and veterinary medicine and provides direct hands-on care for thousands of animals each year. Founded in 1868, it is the second-oldest humane society in the United States. Services include animal protection and adoption, advocacy, humane education, law enforcement, and world-class veterinary care. The MSPCA-Angell is a private, non-profit organization. It does not receive any government funding nor is it funded or operated by any national humane organization. The MSPCA-Angell relies solely on the support and contributions from individuals who care about animals. Please visit and like us on Facebook at



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