A Riverside County animal rescue is looking to give Chance the cat a second chance at life.
ARE Animal Rescue in Hemet, which saves homeless animals from the euthanasia list at local shelters, pulled Chance from a shelter in January. At the time, the cat's condition was so severe, the shelter was going to put him down.
ARE took Chance to three different vets to determine what was causing the infection in his face. The first two vets did biopsies but were unable to identify his condition.
A third vet in Oceanside did another biopsy, and the test came back positive for a rare fungal condition that usually affects the lungs. In Chance's case, it impacted his face.
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ARE’s vet had only seen this infection once before, in a dog who did not survive. The vet recommended euthanizing Chance.
However, ARE did not want to give up on him. The animal rescue started anti-fungal treatment, and eventually, Chance was fungus free.
When the fungal infection healed, the skin sealed Chance’s nose, making it difficult for him to breathe. Now, Chance is at the stage where he needs full nose reconstruction surgery.
ARE Animal Rescue Founder and Executive Director, Amber Schlieder, said that although Chance is doing exceptionally well now, his condition is likely to decline if he does not get the nose surgery.
Because he cannot breathe normally, he struggles to eat. Schlieder described his meals as, "trying to swallow while plugging your nose."
According to Schlieder, Chance could develop a distaste for food because eating is so uncomfortable, which would lead him to become malnourished.
ARE Animal Rescue is currently accepting donations to fund Chance's nose reconstruction.
Chance is in a foster home now, but is currently available for adoption.
"Chance deserves so much out of life. He is like a dog in a cat's body. He loves to go on walks in his harness, and loves to snuggle and purr," Schlieder said. "He needs an owner who can give him the life that he deserves."
If you are interested in adopting Chance, or other pets from ARE Animal Rescue, you can apply on their website.
If you're unable to adopt, ARE is always looking for fosters, especially those willing to take on animals with medical conditions, like Chance.