Sadly, the folks at Douglas County Animal Care & Services in Gardnerville, Nevada, are well accustomed to receiving anonymous animal dumping outside of regular work hours, but this one was even more heartbreaking than usual.
On arrival at the shelter one morning, shelter supervisor Liz Begovich and her collegues came across an animal carrier, with a huge ball of unidentifiable fluff inside. “All we saw was a matted mess,” Liz told The Dodo.
What could this poor creature be? The shelter staff’s first guess was that it must be a dog, given that dogs are generally less fastidious about their grooming than cats. It was time to open the carrier and find out. “We couldn’t turn him around because of the way he was shoved in the carrier,” Liz said. “So we took the top off and thought, ‘Oh my gosh, it’s a cat!’ I’ve never seen a cat in that sort of condition.”
It was really bad. The cat was a prisoner of its own fur, barely able to move under the tangled, matted layers. He was overweight due to lack of exercise, and whoever had owned him must presumably just brought food and water and put it right under his nose.
“We immediately took him to the vet where they sedated him,” Liz continued. “They shaved about 4.5 pounds of hair off of him. It filled a full-size kitchen trash bag.” The sudden freedom immediately lifted the confidence of the previously dreadlocked cat, who they cheekily named Bob Marley. “Once the hair was off, he was walking around. I saw him looking up at the counter thinking, ‘I can jump up there.’ I thought, ‘No you can’t.’”
Bob now has a loving home, who can help him recover from years of neglect, as well as shed all those excess pounds he is carrying around. At 10 years old he still has many good years ahead of him! He has turned out to be such a handsome devil, and was adopted within a few days.
The authorities are making inquiries to try to find Bob’s previous owner, the man who dumped him was captured on CCTV and the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying this person. Perhaps he was a Good Samaritan, having rescued Bob and dropped him at the shelter for treatment, nobody knows. Liz herself is unsure, but has doubts about any good intentions from the mystery man. “Normally, when someone leaves an animal after hours, there’s usually more to the story. It’s typically not a Good Samaritan who found an animal on the side of the road,” she said. “We would really like to know the backstory. There could be other animals in this house, wherever this cat came from, who are in the same condition.”
Either way, the truth will surely emerge eventually. The main thing is that Bob is happy, loved and free of his shackles. Scroll down below to check him out for yourself, and let us know what you think in the comments!