We call it “Broken Heart Syndrome”

PET REPORT by Cory McKeown

You wouldn’t find this phrase by searching through a veterinary medicine book, but at the shelter, we know that this syndrome definitely exists. Basically, it is just as it sounds. When some cats and dogs come in to the shelter, particularly older pets, they often are hit particularly hard by the realization they might have lost the only home they ever knew.

And hit so hard by the thought they may never see the people they loved, that they start “shutting down”. The kitties often stop eating, and hide in the corners of their cages with their heads buried in their paws. Unfortunately, kitties that stop eating, even for a short period of time, can go into a form of liver failure and soon die without heroic measures. The dogs suffering from “Broken Heart Syndrome” can appear the picture of sadness- no wiggling; no tail wagging, no happy barking in greeting.

All shelters encounter “Broken Heart Syndrome” in one form or another- this just happens to be our term for this sad occurrence.  Unfortunately, these three kitties, Rosie, Taffy, and Buffy, are prime candidates for heartbreak. They belonged to a loving woman who recently died of cancer. She was only 58. When she was very sick and knew she wasn’t going to make it, she contacted one of our shelter volunteers, who promised the kitties could come to our shelter when she passed.

When they came to the shelter, we could see they were very upset and bewildered. They just couldn’t figure out just what they had done that might have been bad enough to cause them to lose their loving lady.

Of course, the best “fix” for Broken Heart is a new loving home, which is exactly what we are hoping for these three lovely kitties. Rosie is a pretty Manx calico girl with multiple toes- a “polydactyl” as they say. Her sister Taffy is also a polydactyl calico, but she has a tail, and Buffy is a pretty chubby buff-colored gal with a tail and the usual number of toes.

All three of these kitties are very loving, and would make wonderful companions. We are just hoping they will find their new people soon, before they get too sad. Please come and see these lovely cats, and consider giving them loving homes.  It isn’t every day you have the chance to mend a heart before it is completely broken…

Shelter Wish List

We are in great need of donations of canned cat food and Purina Kitten Chow. Maybe perhaps because of our wonderfully long “Indian summer” this year, we have more cats and kittens than usual at the shelter. Canned food and kitten chow truly help the kitties thrive, and we would very much appreciate these donations. Thank you!