Corky the stray kitten was born with a rare congenital birth defect and was scheduled to be euthanized after being picked up by a local shelter in Fargo, North Dakota. It wasn’t until two cat loving co-founders of Cat’s Cradle Shelter, Carol Stefonek and Amber Schaffer, discovered the adorable feline and decided to wisk him away to Casselton Veterinary Service where Dr. Dan Burchill agreed to operate on the 8-month-old kitten who was born with backwards and overlapping legs that dragged around.
Prior to Burchill’s custom operation designed to resolve Corky’s bilateral anthrogryposis of the tarsus, his overlapping and backwards legs, the doctor was quoted having said that the cat was a:
“Happy, health, engaging, fun cat who dragged his back legs around.”
After practicing for seventeen years, Dr. Burchill had performed the surgery on dogs, but never cats. The disease is considered common in cattle, but rare in cats.
Weighing his options, such as amputation and wheelchair, Dan eventually decided upon surgically fixing Corky’s legs in a four hour operation which cost an estimated $2,500 according to a Y! News report. In the end, his left leg was stabilized with a pin which resolved some anatomy issues and the more severely affected right leg was doing “fabulous.”
Corky’s rehab is expected to include both hydrotherapy as well as acupuncture for one hour a day. The shelter’s co-founders drive 50 miles round trip each and every day to visit their adorable new feline friend.
Those interested in donating to Corky’s surgery can visit Cat’s Cradle Shelter’s Facebook or send checks to CATS Cradle Fund, 9 Ninth Street, South Fargo, North Dakota, 58103.