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Getting to Know: Chou Chou

April 10, 2012

The day was December 23, 2009. The UN climate summit in Copenhagen had just wrapped up. The subversion trial of a prominent Chinese dissident had just begun. An American airlines flight overshot the runway in Jamaica, injuring 44 people. And a Good Samaritan brought an injured 12 week old kitten found by the side of the road to the Animal Humane Society in St. Paul, Minnesota.

The kitten could not use her back legs, and AHS brought her to Grand Avenue Veterinary Center for x-rays to look for fractures in her spine. No fractures were seen, but she had suffered serious trauma to her spinal cord; she was paralyzed in both her back legs and could not empty her bladder without assistance.

Since some spinal cord injuries can heal with rest and time, Dr. Brownlee volunteered to take the kitten home to give her time to recover in a quiet home environment. But despite medical treatment, physical therapy and acupuncture, she regained very little use of her back legs. However, she became very adept at moving around using only her front legs, even learning to go up and down stairs and climb onto her cat tree. Everyone at the clinic fell in love with her sweet, spirited personality, so before long Chou Chou became a permanent resident at Grand Avenue Veterinary Center.

Now, Chou Chou splits her time between the clinic during the week and Dr. Brownlee’s home on the weekends. She keeps us company, brightens our days, and inspires us with her tenacious spirit. She spends most of her time on the second floor, but occasionally visits the front desk. If you see her there at your next visit, be sure to say “hi”!


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