Saving Contessa: A Dramatic Rescue

Contessa in the beginning

This is the heartbreaking story of how Contessa was saved.

Tragically underweight and malnourished, this five pound three year old female has been struggling to survive by a garbage can in an alleyway for a long time. Despite requests to rescue agencies for help, no one stepped up. Little Wanderers to the rescue! 

Living on the Streets

A nice woman who feeds strays on the Bronx city streets found Contessa in December 2015, and watched her in the matter of weeks grow sicker and sicker. Contessa would come and eat, quickly becoming more interactive with the nice woman. In April, the cat disappeared for days, but eventually returned in May. She looked awful…
with obvious hair loss and had diarrhea all over. The cat became more aloof and uninterested and then disappeared again for 3 more days. This time, things looked really bad, Contessa seemed uninterested in her food (or not being able to see it too well).

I’m sorry I didn’t realize how bad she was or how serious the situation was. I kept calling organizations and nobody came to help. 
Thank you Little Wanderers. You responded within an hour of my request and not only got her, you took her straight to the vet for treatment that saved her. 


Late in the night, Little Wanderers responded quickly and headed to the Bronx to pick up the cat. At this point, we could see that Contessa was a mess—missing patches of fur, open wounds on her back legs.  She was malnourished and frail. Until the vet opened in the next morning, we put Contessa in emergency foster care to help her make it through the night.

Emergency Care

We headed early Thursday morning to the vets at Petchester, without an appointment. Dr. Ben-Adi and two vet techs worked on Contessa for hours. as we waited and watched. They shaved all the matted fur off and bathed her. While under sedation she received her spay surgery (no more babies for this girl!). She was severely dehydrated, had diarrhea, missing teeth and a severe respiratory infection. Her skin was so fragile from the dehydration that it was splitting literally and breaking in various spots on her body.

Based on her size and weight (5 lbs) we thought she was just a few months old. But later we confirmed she is actually between 3-4 years of age. This girl has lived a very tough life.

Contessa rushed into emergency care at Petchester


Be A Big Hero For the Little Wanderer Contessa

Contessa is now off the streets. This was one of the most dramatic cases we’ve worked on. This sweet cat would have definitely perished without help.

After hours of intensive care, Contessa resting


We will ensure that Contessa continues to receive the best veterinary care, and she will heal. She will need a lot of love and support.  PLEASE donate to help Contessa and cases such as these. Little Wanderers literally cannot do this without your help.  We are an entirely volunteer network who rely on donations to help these cats.  You can visit our PayPal account, or donate to our GoFundMe.  Please note that we have been having issues with our GoFundMe account on mobile devices, the site does work for desktop computers.

Thank you from Contessa and all of us here at Little Wanderers.  We need Big Heroes like you to keep Little Wanderers going. And a BIG THANKS to Petchester, 309 White Plains Road, Eastchester, NY. The crew there was amazing, it is obvious that they love animals!

WARNING: some of the following images of Contessa receiving critical care and treatment may be upsetting


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One thought on “Saving Contessa: A Dramatic Rescue

  1. You guys are amazing. Even one little cat’s life is worth every measure to save. She looks like she went through a lot, these vets are also amazing! Contessa deserves a loving and safe home


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