Two Lives Down, Seven to Go
Andrea the cat survives being killed twice at ‘shelter’
At foster home with Janita Coombs. Photo by Djanila Grossman/Salt Lake Tribune.
On death row at Utah’s West Valley City animal “shelter,” Andrea the cat was put in the gas chamber, along with several other cats. When they took the dead cats out, Andrea was still alive.
So they put her back in the gas chamber.
When they took her out for the second time, she passed the test of being dead, and was put in a plastic bag and into the refrigerator. Nearly an hour after, someone heard meowing coming from the bag in the fridge.
“She’s definitely an amazing little cat,” city spokesman Aaron Crim said. “She’s not going to be put down, she’s kind of a mascot for cats.”
Seems like you have to survive two attempts to kill you at the “shelter” in order to gain mascot status.
Though Andrea was visibly sick and weakened, she purred and rubbed against the employee who became determined to save her, according to the Community Animal Welfare Society (CAWS), a local rescue group.
Andrea was taken into the care of Janita Coombs, a volunteer with CAWS, who is now fostering her at her home until she’s adopted.
“When we first got her, she had some difficulty walking,” Coombs said. “When they found her hypothermic in the freezer she had vomited and defecated on herself, but she has since seemed to recover quite well. … If you just look at her she looks perfectly healthy.”
CAWS hopes that the cat who wouldn’t die will now serve as a spokescat against the use of gas chambers. According to their website, they are considering filing a claim against the animal shelter.
Other animals have survived not only the gas chamber but also lethal injection.
Rather than focusing on better ways to kill animals, shelters need to focus their energies on saving their lives.