A kitten who was orphaned at birth, found her smile as rescuers nursed her back to health.
The tiny calico was just a few hours old when she was brought to a shelter in California. Chris, an animal rescuer based in Los Angeles, immediately started warming her up as she was cold to the touch. With help from a heating pad, she slowly came back from the brink.
The kitten desperately needed a foster volunteer who could provide round-the-clock care. Chris contacted Hannah Shaw, Founder of Orphan Kitten Club as the clock was ticking for the little one. Hannah hopped in her car and drove all the way to the city to pick her up.
"These little ones can't regulate their own body temperature. At this age, they have no gag reflex," Hannah said via YouTube. "The only thing that a kitten this age can do is move towards heat."
She named her Rosalita.
The kitten was frail but her heart was strong. They knew from the beginning that she was a fighter. That night, Rosalita slept in an incubator, all cleaned up, with a full belly.
Hannah kept tabs on her weight to ensure her growth. The first 24 hours were a bit challenging as the kitten needed to be tube-fed every two hours. As soon as Rosa got her strength back, she was able to eat from a syringe and suckle all by herself.
The sweet calico opened her eyes at around two weeks old and began to peep around the world that she lived in.
"Many babies just like Rosalita, land in shelters, and without a foster parent to bring them home, are euthanized before the day ends. If you find a kitten outside, please do everything you can to find the mom - and to TNR (trap-neuter-return) the cats in the area," Hannah said.
A week later, Rosa started to explore outside her warm, cozy incubator and discovered the adventurous side of her.
Hannah encouraged her to take short walks and explore. "She had a lot to say about it, including lots of whining and the occasional snort-hiss."
Her vision, hearing and coordination rapidly improved from 3-4 weeks and she started to respond to sound and interact with the world around her.
"Rosa is showing some slight delays, but that's okay. There's no rush to grow up," Hannah added.
Rosa graduated from her incubator and moved into her comfy nursery room.
She is very loved by everyone at the rescue, especially her foster dad, Andrew Marttila, who has a soft spot for calicos. "I spent an inordinate amount of time hanging out in the playpen with Rosa," Andrew said.
Rosa loves to be tucked into his shirt and snuggled in his arms, dreaming away.
"Just when you thought she couldn't possibly get any cuter…"
She wears a cute little smile on her face constantly, and knows how to use it to get attention from her humans.
When she's not being held, she demands it with her irresistible smile!
Who could possibly say no?
The adorable calico girl is thriving in foster care.
Rosa just turned six weeks today.
She has come so far from when she was found on the street, just hours after birth, to now blooming into a happy, smiley calico kitty.
Dreaming in Foster Dad's arms.
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