Tipsy the cat may have lost one of his nine lives, but he is still kicking thanks to a strong drink.
The jet-black stray was found suffering near a tire store in Brisbane, Australia, reports ABC News. His rescuers said the feline was near death when he was found, prompting his saviors to rush him to a RSPCA animal hospital in nearby Wacol.
“He couldn’t stand, he couldn’t lift his head, he was hypothermic, he was having convulsions, and really having trouble breathing,” veterinarian Sarah Kanther told ABC about the condition Tipsy arrived in.
Based on where he was found and his severe symptoms Kanther determined that Tipsy had slurped down antifreeze. The coolant is extremely toxic to pets, and ingesting the liquid is often a death sentence for cats. Thankfully, Tipsy arrived at the animal hospital inside the hour window where something could be done.
For such a serious problem, the solution was simple. Tipsy just needed a few shots of vodka.
With the feline already going into renal failure, the staff acted fast, hooking up Tipsy to an IV connected to a diluted bottle of vodka.
“It just so happened that one of our nurses had a bottle of vodka laying around, so we were able to administer it just in time to save his life,” Dr. Kanther said.
This drunken antidote works because it gives the cat’s body something to process aside from the toxic antifreeze. “Basically once you put the alcohol into his blood it metabolizes that instead, and gives the antifreeze time to pass in a less toxic form,” the vet explained.
Staff at the animal hospital said that “a little tipsy” Tipsy was having a “jolly good time” receiving his treatment, especially compared to the sorry state he was in just moments before.
After a night of “heavy drinking” (about 20ml vodka over 12 hours), plenty of non-alcoholic liquids and rest, Tipsy is expected to make a full recovery from his brush with death, reports The Courier Mail.
Now his rescuers are focused on finding the cat a home. Since Tipsy arrived at the animal hospital with no microchip, the RSPCA is waiting to see if an owner comes forward. No one has claimed Tipsy yet, so he has been moved to a foster home and will be put up for adoption in few weeks once his kidneys have fully rested. He’s a great get for anyone looking for a party animal!
While vodka was the life-saving solution for Tipsy, pet owners should never give their pets alcohol, leave that to the professionals. If you believe your cat has ingested antifreeze, take it to an animal hospital immediately for treatment.
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Additionally, make sure all antifreeze is kept where pets cannot reach it. RSPCA officials are worried that the coolant Tipsy ingested may have been a bait trap. The organization says many people use bait traps that include antifreeze around their homes and businesses to keep vermin at bay.
“That’s really disturbing because from what I understand it can take a small teaspoon, and it’s a very unpleasant way to die,” Michael Beatty from the RSPCA told ABC News.
Baiting of any kind is considered a serious offense in Australia, punishable with up to three years in prison.