This tiny rescued kitten is truly special. She was born missing one leg and her heart beats right under her skin and fur, but the little kitty doesn't think she's any different.
Meet Olive the cat!
Little Olive came to the city shelter in Philadelphia in need of a lot of help.
The tiny two month old kitten (just about one pound) was missing a limb, then they detected something else about her. "The vet staff at ACCT Philly thought she had a diaphragmatic hernia, so she was 'timestamped' (at risk for euthanasia), Holly Dixon told Love Meow.
Holly, avid volunteer and fosterer, knew that she had to get the kitten out of there ASAP. She reached out to the Philly Kitty Rescue (a no-kill, volunteer-run cat rescue that often takes in very "broken" cats and kittens) to see if they would be willing to take her in. They did not hesitate and contacted the shelter as soon as they learned about the kitten.
"I picked up Olive from the shelter the following day. I've taken in many, many kittens in my almost 10 years of fostering, but I've never met a kitten quite like Olive. This girl was born with a congenital amputation of her left front leg, and when I placed my hand under her to lift her, I literally felt her heart beating against my fingers."
"We got her to the vet, who confirmed her diaphragm was intact and she didn't have a hernia, but that's when they told us she was actually missing most of her sternum, which is why we can see and feel her heart beating in her chest," Holly told Love Meow.
The only thing that protects her heart is her skin and soft kitten fur.
But little Olive has been nothing but happy and lovey. She is always in good spirits and will curl up in her foster mom's arms or the crook of her neck, napping away. Even with just three legs, she has no trouble getting around. To Olive, being 3-legged is normal.
Olive is very playful and has absolutely no fear, so Holly fitted her for a cozy sweater and fashioned a chest plate to keep her sternum-less chest safe and secure.
"She is a giant ball of energy! She's incredibly curious--always wants to get into everything or play with anything she can reach," Holly told Love Meow.
"She purrs as soon as she sees anyone. She really has no fear at all. She wants to wrestle with my big cats, but I can't let her because of her little unprotected heart. She is a funny girl. She makes me laugh every single day."
The little puffball of kitten deserves a great life and they are determined to help her get there. Little Olive will have her sternum repair surgery when she is big enough so her heart can be protected and she will be able to live a normal life.
"We're committed to giving her a full life by doing this surgery."
"We would love to give little Olive a chance at a normal life. A life where she can run and jump without the risk of injury to her unprotected heart."
This brave little kitty is missing a few parts, but she never stops loving life.
Share this story with your friends. If you would like to help with Olive's medical expenses, click here to make a donation. Follow Olive's updates at The Philly Kitty Rescue on Facebook.