Firefighters rescue burned black cat from Valley Fire

LAKE COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- A cat that was badly burned in the Valley Fire was rescued by firefighters and although his injuries are severe, he is expected to be OK.

When veterinarian Chris Holmes saw the injured cat he considered euthanizing him.

"He can't eat because his lips and mouth are so swollen," Holmes said. "At first, he couldn't open his mouth."

After inserting a feeding tube, the cat showed signs of hope. Holmes affectionately named him Mr. Burns.

Mr. Burns is a friendly, neutered cat who is obviously someone's pet. A fire crew from Eugene, Ore. found him wandering, unable to see. The tips of his ears were melted and his paws were scorched by the flames.

"There's an antibiotic in there, so it's kind of hard to tell, but there are eyes in there," Holmes said. "His nose is pretty plugged up and we're finally able to kind of open his mouth."

The cat should be fine in about two weeks, Holmes estimated.

The cat was sitting on a driveway at 19594 State Highway 175 near Middletown. There's no telling what he went through, but he's one of many pets that got left behind in the chaos of Saturday's evacuation.

Holmes says the clinic has many cats and dogs that are being sheltered at this time and he's treated some dogs with smoke inhalation, but there haven't been any serious cases until the cat was brought in.

"Well there are 65 healthy dogs at the Animal Control in Lakeport that we're trying to find their owners," said Polly Holt, a vet tech.

As evacuees begin returning, the Wasson Memorial Vet Clinic in Lakeport expects to receive more injured or lost pets, but for now it's simply trying to find the owner of Mr. Burns.

If anyone has any information regarding the owner of this cat, please contact the Wasson Memorial Veterinary Clinic:

Wasson Memorial Veterinary Clinic
3082 CA-175
Lakeport, CA 95453
(707) 263-5380.

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