Amid the carnage and destruction of the wildfires, there are some happy endings.
Kate Hale this week was reunited with her cat Silly at the UC Davis Veterinarian Medical Teaching Hospital.
Hale had to flee her Santa Rosa home in her bathrobe when the fires began. Silly ran off in the confusion of the hasty evacuation. Fortunately, neighbors who returned after the fire heard meowing from a burned-out car and found Silly, whose paws, whiskers and ears had been singed.
Hale choked up a little when she thinks about the help from neighbors and UC Davis.
“So they rescued her, and took her to the hospital in Santa Rosa which had been burned out, and then took her to Rohnert Park, and some wonderful person in Rohnert Park connected her with this fabulous, fabulous fabulous UC Davis Veterinary Hospital, so I’m incredibly grateful,” Hale said, shortly before the happy reunion.
UC Davis staff and students have dedicated hundreds of hours to treating 22 cats, 10 horses, two llamas, one dog, and about 33 koi injured or displaced by wildfire, said Chief Veterinary Medical Officer Dr. Jane Sykes.
The hospital has been able to care for the influx of almost 70 animals needing intensive care due to the efforts of volunteers and generous donations, Sykes said.
Most of the animals are expected to make a full recovery, and several, like Silly, have already been reunited with their families. The most severely injured critters are expected to remain at the hospital for a few more weeks.
The hospital maintained its usual caseload along with the influx of critters from the fire thanks to hundreds of hours of student and staff volunteers and generous donors to help with treatment costs.
The reunion between Hale and Silly was joyful, with Hale beaming and Silly coming to the front of her crate for pets and chin scritches.
“She lives up to her name, all the neighbors will tell you,” Hale said.