Meet Rademenes, The Polish Shelter Cat Who Acts As A ‘Nurse’ For His Sick Friends

Cats may have a reputation for being cold and aloof (when they want to be, that is), but a Polish cat named Rademenes has defied that stereotype, taking on the role of “nurse” to his sick and injured friends at the shelter where he lives.

The adorable black cat was brought to the animal shelter in the Polish city of Bydgoszcz (pronounced something that sounds like “BID-u-gusht”) last fall, according to TVN Meteo. Sick with respiratory problems, his former owners brought him to the shelter to have him humanely put down, but instead, shelter veterinarian Lucy Kuziel-Zawalich nursed him back to health. It wasn’t an easy road.

[Translated from Polish via Google] “The cat was in such poor health that the shelter staff couldn’t allow him around other animals. He had a problem with his hair. He was balding. He lived in an isolated office.”

Cats may have a reputation for being cold and aloof (when they want to be, that is), but a Polish cat named Rademenes has defied that stereotype, taking on the role of “nurse” to his sick and injured friends at the shelter where he lives.

The adorable black cat was brought to the animal shelter in the Polish city of Bydgoszcz (pronounced something that sounds like “BID-u-gusht”) last fall, according to TVN Meteo. Sick with respiratory problems, his former owners brought him to the shelter to have him humanely put down, but instead, shelter veterinarian Lucy Kuziel-Zawalich nursed him back to health. It wasn’t an easy road.

[Translated from Polish via Google] “The cat was in such poor health that the shelter staff couldn’t allow him around other animals. He had a problem with his hair. He was balding. He lived in an isolated office.”

Fortunately, Rademenes won his battle against his respiratory disease and has made a full recovery. And, according to Huffington Post, once he started getting better, the staff at the animal shelter noticed something strange about him: he began acting as a “nurse” to other animals.

He “hugs” them after they come out of surgery. He nuzzles up against them. He stands by their sides as they recover. Sometimes, he licks their ears. Cat or dog, it doesn’t matter: Rademenes is a “nurse” to all of the sick and injured animals at the shelter.

Today, Rademenes serves as the unofficial nurse of the animal shelter, as well as its mascot.

Animal behaviorists are generally hesitant to assign words that describe human qualities like “empathy” or “morality” to animal behavior, but renowned animal behaviorist Dr. Frans de Waal from Emory University, says that the evidence is clear that many animals do show what can only be described as empathy, according to The Independent.

“There is increasing evidence, mostly in mammals but also in birds, that animals are sensitive to the emotions of others and react to distress in others by attempts to ameliorate their situation or rescue them.”

Such social behavior may be rare in cats, however. Or it may be that we humans, who, like dogs, have evolved to live in social groups, are just projecting our expectations onto cats, who have not, according to Perfect Paws.

“Because the cat is not a pack animal, there is no inherent need or desire for the cat to comply with anyone’s wishes but its own. We humans have a difficult time accepting this because we relate as pack animals.”

Fortunately for the other animals at the Bydgoszcz shelter, Rademenes the nurse cat is one of the cats that has formed a social group and has learned to show empathy.

[Images courtesy of: Imgur]

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