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Saturday, September 10, 2011

Tootsie does the moggie paddle: Swimming cat that was victim of hit-and-run is nursed back to health

Doggie-paddle: Tootsie swims to aid his recovery in the canine hydrotherapy pool in Hereford

When two-year-old Tootsie was knocked down and left for dead by the side of the road, he was not expected to survive.

Vets told owner Sue Wilson that the black cat was unlikely to make a full recovery from his injuries, which included a shattered right leg, and recommended she considered putting him down.

But in a last ditch attempt to give the unlucky feline a second chance at life veterinary surgeons suggested the moggie get his feet - and everything else - wet.

Soaked through: Tootsie after his swimming therapy session to rebuild his shattered leg and return him to fitness

Now thanks to six weeks of intensive hydrotherapy at a specially designed two-foot deep pool for dogs, Tootsie is back to full fitness.

The little black battler swam at the Hereford Canine Hydrocare centre - the first cat to use the pool - every day for more than a month and now has the strength to doggy-paddle unaided.

A little help from a friend: Sally Worthing of the Hereford Canine Hydrocare centre helps Tootsie rack up some more lengths in the pool

Tootsie started on the long road to recovery with just ninety second dips while wearing a harness to help lower him in and out of the pool.

But by the end of the six-week training plan he was able to swim freely without his safety rope or harness for 20 minutes at a time.

Helen White from the centre said: 'He swam naturally from the moment he entered the pool, which breaks the myth that cats can't swim.'

And she added: 'Each animal has an individual slot so although they might cross in the doorway there is no chance of a cat meeting a dog.'

source: dailymail


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