'Courageous' cat survives horrific burns in sofa fire
A courageous cat has been named a finalist in the PDSA Pet Survivor Awards 2013.
Former stray kitten Robbie was nominated for the competition by his new owner Gill Smith, a retired police officer from South Croydon.
The 54-year-old took in the kitten after hearing when he was just six months old and thought to be a stray that he took shelter in an abandoned sofa in the village of Ash, near Herne Bay.
But this nearly proved to be his undoing when the sofa was somehow set alight and consumed by flames, with little Robbie still inside.
He was rushed to nearby Broadway Vets with severe burns to his face, head, legs and paws.
Principal Vet Sarah Platt said: "Robbie was in shock when he arrived and needed intensive care.
"He stayed with us for six months during which time he had two skin grafts and daily dressing changes. One of his back legs also had to be amputated."
Robbie received thousands of pounds worth of treatment, much of which was paid for by the local community after the vet practice published appeals in the local newspaper.
Ms Smith was visiting Herne Bay when she saw Robbie's story and joined in the fundraising activities to finance his treatment. She visited him regularly despite the distance, and when no owner came forward she offered Robbie a home for life.
She said: "Robbie is a unique character and he still bears the physical scars from his fiery ordeal. The tips of his ears are missing and the toes on his remaining back leg were ‘melted’ together into a stump.
"But despite this he runs around the house like a rocket. He is a little hero, and his bravery and fortitude have inspired many people in the community."
PDSA Vet Elaine Pendlebury added: "Robbie is a truly inspiring story for us all.
"He coped so well with his pain and suffering and fought back against severe injuries that not all pets would have overcome."
One-year-old old Robbie is up against five other plucky pets who are in the running for the title of PDSA Pet Survivor of 2013.
The public have until December 15, to vote by text for their favourite pet survival story.
To see all the finalists stories and how to vote visit pdsa.org.uk/petsurvivor
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