Penmellyn Veterinary Hospital, St Columb

PUBLISHED: 09:14 24 March 2010 | UPDATED: 16:56 20 February 2013

Penmellyn Veterinary Hospital, St Columb

Penmellyn Veterinary Hospital, St Columb

Marmie the cat's miracle recovery from gunshot wounds.<br/><br/>Marmie, a 10month old Ginger cat from Delabole, Cornwall was missing for five days before he was discovered collapsed in a road and taken to see local veterinary surgeon Jonathan Holt.

Marmie the cats miracle recovery from gunshot wounds.


Marmie, a 10month old Ginger cat from Delabole, Cornwall was missing for five days before he was discovered collapsed in a road and taken to see local veterinary surgeon Jonathan Holt. Initially a car accident was suspected as the cause of Marmies multiple injuries, but xrays showed that he had gunshot wounds to both his front right and back left leg.


As soon as Marmie stabilised he was taken to surgeon Colin Whiting at Penmellyn Veterinary Hospital, St Columb Major; and incredibly though recumbent at presentation the little cat was purring and had been eating well.


Further investigation pieced together the shocking story: Marmie had been shot by a single air gun pellet that had travelled almost completely through his body. The shot shattered Marmies front leg, entered his chest, passed through his abdomen and into his groin, then broke his back leg before lodging in his thigh. Infection had become established separately in his abdomen and groin, and his liver was torn.


A team of two surgeons and three nurses worked on Marmie through a three hour anaesthetic, removing infected tissue, repairing and closing his abdomen, repairing his fractured foreleg with a metal plate and screws, and his splintered hindleg with a metal plate and external scaffold frame. Marmies medication included three antibiotics and four different methods of pain relief to ensure he was comfortable throughout.


As Marmie was transferred to the recovery unit, Colin telephoned his elderly owners straight away. I was delighted to have happy news to share; by the time Id described all his injuries and the repair techniques wed performed it was a lot to take in and its only really when you reconstruct the path of the shot that you realise how incredible Marmies survival in the wild was. This cat must have suffered agony trying to move himself with these injuries, and my impression is that for the pellet to have penetrated in and out of his forearm, and then virtually through the rest of his body again, it must have been fired from very close range. Whilst it is rewarding to be involved in repairing Marmies injuries, this little cat has been through hell and still has at least two months of recovery ahead, and all due to some idiots cruel actions.


Nurse Becky Lock is part of the team caring for Marmie. The Police and RSPCA have been informed, and are pursuing the matter locally; but if this case can highlight the suffering caused by these cruel acts I sincerely hope that the culprit hears of the effects of their actions and it makes them stop.


Marmie is now doing well; he remains hospitalised but at five days after surgery he is able to walk on all four legs, infection is under control and he now stands every chance of making a good recovery.


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