Mother Cat Takes Bullet to Head, Saves Her Litter, Lives to Purr

Not only are Cindy and her kitties recovering from the harrowing ordeal, but they're ready for adoption.

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cat and her litter
"Go ahead, do wrong by my kittens, I dare you!" —Cindy the Cat. (Photo: Carlsbad Patch)

A brave, lucky orange cat named Cindy is my vote for mother of the year.

Last Thursday, the stray “queen” (as nursing cats are called) was shot in the head with a bb gun, but somehow managed to summon enough maternal fortitude to stay close to her newborns.

Soon thereafter she was discovered by a Good Samaritan and brought to the Helen Woodward Animal Center in Rancho Santa Fe, California.

“She is doing great, she’s such a sweet little kitty,” says Jessica Gerke, PR manager at the center, to TakePart.

The prognosis wasn’t always that rosy.

“It was touch and go when they first arrived,” said veterinarian Stephanie Oba to the Carlsbad Patch. “They were all very tiny, malnourished, unvaccinated and very scared. It took a gentle hand to pull that momma away from her babies.”

Cindy and her kittens are recovering and are available for adoption.

If you would like to bring home one of these rescues, please contact Helen Woodward Animal Center Adoption Department at (858) 756-4117 ext. 313, visit animalcenter.org or stop by at 6461 El Apajo Road in Rancho Santa Fe.


Is Cindy the bravest cat you’ve ever heard of? If not, tell us the kitty that beats her.


Jocelyn Heaney is an English instructor, animal activist and freelance writer for L.A. Review of Books and Warner Bros. Pictures, among others. Her favorite animals are great white sharks, horses and all cats. She is currently at work on a memoir. Email Jocelyn | @JocelynHeaney