Update on Mango the Burned Cat


WARNING: Story describes an act of animal cruelty in general terms.

Sweet Mango, the Calico who never lost her power of purr, has found fancy new feline-friendly digs and state-of-the-art care at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary.

We reported on Mango last week. She was doused with lighter fluid and set afire on April 20, sustaining burns to over 70 percent of her body. Fortunately, a local rescue group, New Beginnings for Animals Merced, was able to take Mango into their care, and with the help of a local vet, gave her the care necessary to heal her wounds. Her owner simply could not afford the thousands of dollars required to treat the cat. The owner’s vet had sent Mango home, untreated, with some antibiotics.

Sharon Lohman, VP of New Beginnings for Animals Merced, said she was contacted by Best Friends about helping Mango. Best Friends houses more than 1,700 animals on 3,700 acres in Kanab, Utah. Over 200,000 members help support Best Friends’ work.

“They called me and said they had some questions about her and they wanted to talk to the vet who was treating her,” Lohman said.

Dr. Christine McFadden, a Merced veterinarian, had been caring for the cat since she was burned, according to Lohman.

“After they talked to me, they said there was a chance they could take Mango,” Lohman said. “Then they called back and said they would take her.”

Best Friends specializes in abused and abandoned animals, according to John Polis, public relations manager for Best Friends.

“We are the largest organization in the United States for abused and abandoned animals,” Polis said. The organization has veterinarians trained in critical care, and donations from members of the society help pay for veterinary care for all types of companion animals.

The Merced Police Department is investigating the case as animal cruelty, and is said to be investigating “persons of interest.” Because the cat may be evidence if the case goes to court, Lohman had to make sure Mango could leave the county. The police department gave Lohman permission to take Mango. She packed up the little cat last week and headed for Utah.

“Dr. McFadden gave her heavy-duty painkillers just in case,” Lohman said. “But the whole way she was purring and talking to us. We would talk to her and she would meow back at us.”

Mango has already undergone surgery at Best Friends to help her start the healing process. Lohman said the vets said it could take months before Mango is ready to be adopted, but that when she is ready, a home won’t be hard to find for the sweet cat who shares her gentle purrs with everyone she meets.

“As soon as we got there, she just started purring for the vets and technicians,” Lohman said.

Mango will be made a Guardian Angel by the sanctuary, which means people can donate money that will go specifically to Mango’s care. Lohman said she is sure that Mango will get the best care possible in Utah.

“I’m so grateful that she could go there,” Lohman said.

Mango isn’t out of the woods, yet. The big worry right now is infection, and she’s nearly been mummified from head to toe with bandages.

Despite the pain of the ordeal, Polis says, “She still greets everyone with a purr.”

[SOURCE: Merced Sun Star, Carol Reiter;]

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