Little Minnie definitely fits her name!
The tiny kitten from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is only 1/3 the size of her siblings. When they were first rescued by a shelter in the city, her 2 brothers were 4 pounds each, a healthy weight for young kittens.
However, Minnie was only a minuscule 0.8 pounds. Not only that, but she never ate much food, if any at all.
Her foster family knew immediately that something was wrong and sent her to another foster mom, Tabitha, so that she could get undivided attention.
After a couple of trips to the vet, they found out what the problem was. She had a persistent right aortic arch, meaning that a part of her heart has grown around her throat. This means that Minnie can't swallow solid food at all.
Luckily, Tabitha was determined that the cute kitten would live like any other.
She feeds Minnie a liquid diet by hand, holding her upright to help her get it down. Even so, Minnie's condition can still make it difficult for her to get any food at all, as Tabitha explains:
Minnie hasn't gone a single day without regurgitating no matter how careful we are to feed the right amount, the right pace, and the right consistency, it's bound to get backed up in her esophagus.
But despite this, Minnie is still affectionate and enthusiastic about everything – especially food! As Tabitha told LoveMeow:
She is the most playful, fearless, loving kitten I've met. And I've met a lot having worked in an animal shelter. She's not ever going to give up and neither are we.
Now 6 months old, Minnie is still not quite the same size as other kittens her age, but she's doing much better, weighing 3 pounds!
And there's even better news on the horizon. 4 days ago, Minnie went to the University of Florida to get ready for an operation to untangle her heart and throat.
Because she's so small, she has ended up having to stay at there for a little bit longer after getting ill, but Tabitha is confident that she will soon be well enough to have her life saving surgery. In a matter of weeks, Minnie will finally be able to eat solid food for the first time!
Tabitha has set up a GoFundMe for Minnie to help pay for her expensive surgery and hospital stay, which you can donate to here. You can also follow tiny Minnie's story on her Instagram, or her Facebook page.
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