Finding Baby Phoenix

6th Nov, 2019


Sisters, Thandwethimo (right,) who found Phoenix, and
Siyamthanda (left), who took Phoenix to her school on the Bluff.

Written by Tatum Ridgway, one of the Founders of Kitty Care

Photography by Colette Bodenstaff

Phoenix was rescued from Phoenix, in Durban (of course!), and soon after being rescued, I received a frantic message from Janice MacDonald, his foster mom.

She was asleep with the three kittens on her bed between feeds; they’d all snuggled together on her bed. She woke up to them screaming – a huge stray male cat had jumped through an open window in the house and had stolen Phoenix off the bed. Male cats are known for doing this and killing the kittens.

Janice and her dad spent the night frantically searching for Phoenix.

And this is where the story gets weird...

Janice saw a Facebook post from Cherece du Plessis of Second Chance Sanctuary about a little kitten that had been found close to death and that she’d taken in and helped. Janice immediately thought that it looked like Phoenix but wondered how the heck he’d have got from Woodhaven to the Bluff!

But – incredibly – it turned out to be Phoenix!

Foster mum, Janice, shares…

The little girl next door to us, Thandwethimo Mabasp, heard a crying kitten and found Phoenix crying and bleeding. Being the first day back at school, her Gran had said she couldn’t take the day off to look after the baby, so she must put it in a blanket and place it by my gate. Unfortunately, granny also had to go to the hospital to get her medication, so nobody let us know about the kitten.

This is where it gets interesting… the taxi that picks up Thandwethimo to go to school also does the kids’ drop-off on the Bluff, and Siyamthanda, her sister, who goes to Kenmont took the kitten with her to school, telling her teacher that she’d found it in the street where she lives in Woodlands.

After school the teacher took the kitten to Brighton Beach Vet, and she then contacted Cherece from Second Chance Sanctuary. She posted on Facebook for donations to cover the vet bill with a picture of the kitten. Upon seeing this, I commented on what had happened to Phoenix the previous evening. I then decided to phone and ask about the kitten’s markings, because I was convinced that it was Phoenix.

Cherece confirmed the markings were the same, so I drove to the Bluff. Upon hearing my voice, Phoenix made his first noise while at the vet. I took him directly to Montclair Animal Hospital, where his wounds were cleaned and ointment was applied. In addition to an injection for pain and a drip for fluids, he was administered glucose for five hours, as his sugar levels were very low; we were also to feed him as normal with milk. I’m so grateful that we have Phoenix back!

Phoenix is doing well and we’re so happy!

A huge thank you to everyone involved in his SECOND rescue... and especially to the child, the teacher, and of course the amazing Cherece!

A huge lesson has been learnt. Needless to say, Phoenix now sleeps in a basket and all windows are kept tightly shut!

From Phoenix to Woodlands to Bluff and back to Woodlands – little Phoenix sure is a travelling kitten.

Phoenix is still in need of a home so if you’d like to make him part of your family, please contact Tatum on 064 682 6135.