MSPCA-Angell Reveals its 10 Most Amazing Animal Stories of 2017

Animals Beat the Odds, Stole Hearts and Landed on their Feet in the Year that was  

BOSTON, Jan. 5, 2017 – As 2018 kicks off the MSPCA-Angell today unveiled its 10 most amazing animal stories of 2017, a year filled with unbelievable tales of survival and adoption that forever changed the lives of these 10 animals—and the people who love them.

From the MSPCA’s world-class Angell Animal Medical Center to its animal care and adoption centers in Boston, Centerville and Methuen, Mass., animals stole the show in 2017.

Dog Abandoned at Christmas and Found Shivering on a Doorstep

2017 kicked off with the discovery of a matted, dirty and very scared Shih Tzu who was found shivering on a Dorchester doorstep and rushed to the Boston adoption center by a good Samaritan.  “Petie,” as she was later named, found warmth, love and shelter at the MSPCA.  And when veterinarians diagnosed her with a heart condition known as Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA), she was given a life-saving operation.  She now lives with her adoptive family and proves that every rough beginning can have a very happy ending.

Cape Cod Kitty Leavings Hoarding House Behind for Loving Home

“Patrick” the cat used at least one of his nine lives last March when he and 77 other cats were pulled from a Fall River hoarding house.  He and his best bud “Pudding” were sent to the MSPCA-Cape Cod in Centerville, with the remaining kitties going to other rescue groups from which they were adopted.  Patrick required an operation at the MSPCA’s Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston to help him overcome a chronic respiratory issue that made breathing very difficult.  Patrick recovered oh-so-quickly and he and Pudding were adopted soon after!

Oreo the Cat’s Near Fatal Run-in with a Car

A young cat named Oreo arrived at the MSPCA’s Angell Animal Medical Center in May after she was struck by a fast-moving car in Lawrence, Mass.  Her injuries were catastrophic: the accident left her with a mangled front leg and with most of the skin torn away from her right hind leg.  Angell doctors worked round-the-clock to patch her up and, despite her injuries ranking as some of the worst ever seen by the MSPCA, Oreo ultimately healed and was adopted by a loving family.

“Miracle Dog” Survives Puppyhood Despite Cleft Palate

For dogs, surviving a cleft palate—an opening between the mouth and nose that occurs when tissues separating these two cavities fail to grow together—is exceedingly rare because the condition makes it nearly impossible to suckle, resulting in most puppies born with the condition dying in the first few days of life.  But one-year-old “Clefford” defied those odds and became the ultimate survivor, despite losing his home when his family suddenly lost theirs.  Doctors at the MSPCA’s Angell Animal Medical Center performed surgery to repair Clefford’s palate and soon after he was placed into a wonderful new home (and he has even become a bit of an Instagram celebrity!).

“No Nose Nigel” gets a New Face AND a New Home

No one will soon forget the story of Nigel, the tiny orange kitten found last July living beside a dumpster in Dorchester with an open festering wound where most of his nose and upper lid should have been.  Nigel likely lost much of his facial tissue after getting stick between the inside of a tin can and the lip.  Frightened and in pain, he found solace at the MSPCA’s Boston adoption center.  And once he grew old enough for an operation, Angell’s Dr. Mike Pavletic—renowned for life-saving reconstructive surgery performed on dogs and cats during his three decades of work—reconstructed his face.  Nigel was adopted by a member of the medical team who cared for him, and he’s become an Instagram sensation. He’s come a long way from his days beside the dumpster—and he even has over 5,000 followers on Instagram!

From Critically Injured and Shivering Outside to a Life of Warmth and Comfort

What a difference a day makes!  A young cat who’d been struck by a car—perhaps a week prior to being found—was discovered crying on the back porch of a Lawrence resident who wasted no time bringing her to the MSPCA-Nevins Farm in nearby Methuen, where she was checked out.  “Samosa,” as she’s since been named, had fractures to her elbow and pelvis, which required surgery at the MSPCA’s Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston.  Fortunately, she survived and lives in a new home with her adoptive family.

Starving Kitten with Collar Embedded into her Neck Barely Squeaks by

A social and outgoing kitty now named “Nickie” is breathing a sigh of relief in her adopted home after a collar—embedded so tightly into her neck that she could no longer eat—was surgically removed by the MSPCA’s Boston shelter veterinary staff.  Nickie was found on the streets in Boston and brought in by a good Samaritan, who’s credited with saving her life because, on top of the terrible pain caused by the collar digging into her skin, Nickie was in danger of starving to death as she could no longer eat.  She has since been adopted and lives with her new owner and canine best friend, Earle.

Two Dogs Struck by Cars on Separate Days Find Homes after Emergency Care

The MSPCA witnessed an unusual spate of dogs (and cats) critically injured by cars in 2017.  In June, an adorable but frightened Chihuahua was found barely conscious alongside a city street in Mattapan and, just three days later, a Shih Tzu mix was surrendered after she was struck by a car and critically injured in Jamaica Plain.

The Chihuahua, now named Nutmeg, required emergency surgery to repair her hind legs, including the installation of plates and screws to stabilize her pelvis.  The Shih Tzu, named Lily, also required surgery.

Fortunately, both Nutmeg and Lily recovered and now spend their lives in warm and loving homes.

A Tumble Out the Window and… into a New Home!

When ten-week-old puppy Luca tumbled out the third floor window of a Haverhill, Mass. home, her then owners were shocked to discover that she suffered no serious injury.  Still, they worried that the spirited and mischievous pup was too much for them and opted to surrender her to the MSPCA.  X-rays confirmed that despite a fall that could easily have killed her, she was sound in mind and body and the MSPCA-Nevins Farm found a wonderful new home in which she lives now.  And with screens on the windows!




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