12 Saves of Christmas: #10 Sampson the Cat

Nevada Humane Society’s 12 Saves of Christmas was introduced several years ago. It received an overwhelmingly positive response, letters of appreciation, and more, all of which came unexpectedly to us. We see day in and day out the difference we make in the lives of thousands of animals but we didn’t realize we weren’t fully communicating those lifesaving efforts to you – our biggest fans. Thus, the 12 Saves of Christmas was created. Now, every holiday season, we find ourselves receiving messages asking when our 12 Saves of Christmas begins. Without further ado, we present to you the 12 Saves of Christmas of 2016.


12 Saves of Christmas #10: Sampson the Cat

At ten years old, Sampson was not well. He wound up at Washoe County Regional Animal Services as a stray and they immediately noticed that he was obese, dehydrated, not eating well on his own and depressed. They called us for help, and we took Sampson over to our veterinary clinic right away.

Sampson is the kind of cat whom we wish we had a backstory on. How did he wind up on the street? Did he ever belong to anyone? What had happened to make him so sad, and alone? We made a promise then and there to be by his side no matter what was going on and what his outcome may be.

Our veterinary team noticed that because he was overweight, his back and spine appeared to be painful to touch. He also had dental disease, and multiple signs pointed to early kidney disease. Poor Sampson was a mess.

We began the basic steps to getting him back on his paws—fluids to hydrate him, soft (but diet) food to give him strength, constant contact with staff, and pain medication for his back. Timing was crucial, because he didn’t have the attitude we needed to see—the attitude of a fighter. He was instead depressed and heartbroken.

We monitored him closely, but two days later, things worsened. Sampson wasn’t moving and didn’t want to respond to us. We had to act quickly.

We started spending more time with him, just sitting by his kennel, talking to him and petting him. His eyes started to sparkle and his ears stood up. Clearly, he valued the attention.

A decision was made to move Sampson from his kennel into the admin offices, where he would be surrounded by multiple people, as well as other cats. He seemed to simply want to be loved. The admin team welcomes anyone with open arms and Sampson was no exception. Right away everyone snuggled him, helped him eat, and gave him cozy blankets and toys. Basically he was spoiled.

Slowly, Sampson came alive. He became more social, accepting the attention from humans and cats alike. Within weeks, his health completely turned around.

Today, Sampson still resides in the admin offices. He has a cozy space that has become his, but day after day he is coming out seeking even more attention and joining the rest of the group, humans and cats alike. You can just see a sparkle in his eyes and the appreciation in his expressions. Sampson knows we saved him.

Now he has just one more wish. A home. A real home, with a couch and chairs and a queen sized bed and a family to call his own. Though he is now thriving, he deserves more. Won’t you take the time to come meet Sampson and see if he’s a good fit for you? He’s at our Reno shelter, at 2825 Longley Lane. We’d love to see him home for the holidays.Adoptable Pets at Nevada Humane Society


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