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‘Funky-Looking House Cat’ Rescued

May 14, 2004

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (AP) _ There was more to the ``funky-looking house cat″ rescued by a good Samaritan this week along a highway. The unidentified rescuer picked up the dazed feline Tuesday afternoon after it had apparently been struck by a car near Wilder Ranch State Park.

It was fortunate the cat was too stunned to move. The nearly 10-pound ``funky″ kitty turned out to be a bobcat with sharp claws and 3/4-inch fangs.

Dave Shuman, owner of Westside Animal Hospital, said the woman brought the female cat to his facility and he knocked it out with anesthesia and gave it fluids and medicine to reduce brain swelling.

The rescuer was surprised when she found out exactly what she’d put in her car.

``She said, `I thought it looked kinda strange,‴ Shuman said. ``I don’t think she quite understood that if it had woken up in her car, she would have had to run out of her car.″

``These are not house cats,″ he said. ``Domesticated cats have been bred selectively for thousands of years. Nothing about bobcats would be warm and fuzzy. There is not a lot that separates them from the tigers of India. They’re pure predator.″

Shuman said the cat has no broken bones, ``just a big whack on the noggin.″ It had a 50 percent chance of survival, he said.

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