Today, let’s talk about a ‘reborn’ cat.
Each winter, the world loses many stray cats, and those familiar little friends might not reappear the next spring.
Stray cats, at the bottom of the urban ecosystem, don’t always make it… But our star today is a miracle kitten, saved from a certain ‘death sentence’ by a stroke of luck.
Just a heads up before we dive in: he’s a rare exception; so many stray cats vanish during the winters…
November 23, 2015, was Thanksgiving, an American original holiday, where families gather, eat, and drink, kind of like our Spring Festival.
That morning in Garden City, Rich County, Utah, USA, after a heavy overnight snowfall, the ground was covered with nearly ten centimeters of snow, freezing like an ice cellar. In Bear Lake, a group of middle-aged siblings decided to take their kids out for some snow fun. One little boy leading the way tripped over something in the snow.
His uncle, Justin, cleared the snow to find a shocking sight: a dead cat.
Upon closer inspection, the uncle realized it was a frozen-stiff kitten, its eyes still open.
The cat-loving uncle gently cradled the kitten. The family gathered, some in shock, others in tears.
They figured the little guy got buried in the snow while seeking shelter in a stray cat house the night before. It was a mystery why such a small kitten was left to face its first winter without maternal protection.
“he boy who found the cat clung to his uncle, pleading softly, ‘Please save him.’ His father, Brandon, remarked from the side, ‘The cat’s gone.’
‘No, still alive,’ the uncle felt warmth in the kitten’s tiny, rigid body. He tried warming it up by vigorously rubbing its back, but the kitten remained stiff and unresponsive.
Undeterred, the uncle rushed indoors to the fireplace, massaging the kitten and performing CPR…
But the kitten lay motionless, eyes wide open, unresponsive.
The cat was already dead…
Brandon, the boy’s father, turned off his camera, overwhelmed by witnessing a life’s end on Thanksgiving morning. He quickly sent the kids outside to play in the snow.
An hour later, upon returning inside, he witnessed a miracle:
The cat, thought frozen to death, was alive!
The uncle (his brother Justin) had been reviving the kitten with massages and CPR by the stove for an hour, bringing it back from the brink of death.
Slowly, the kitten came to. Smelling canned food, it suddenly came alive, hungrily opening its mouth to eat.”
Sure enough, nothing beats a good appetite.
Revived on Thanksgiving, this kitten seemed touched by a miracle.
Brandon and his family decided to adopt him, naming him Lazarus, after the biblical figure resurrected by Jesus.
The miraculous kitten, Lazarus, even got TV time
From a human perspective, this was Lazarus’s miraculous ‘debut.’ But for Lazarus, his story was just beginning:
Oscar Wilde once wrote a fairy tale called ‘The Star Child,’ about a woodcutter who finds a dying infant in the snow and raises him to discover he’s a prince…
Lazarus might be like that, a ‘reincarnated’ prince. He remembers being born among white snow, with people cheering and blessing him. We’ll never know what prince Lazarus was in a past life, but in this one, he’s an incredibly happy… dog.
Rescued at 8 weeks old, Lazarus was revived by Uncle Justin and taken to the ER, then recuperated at his uncle’s. Brought home by his parents, he found himself in a loving family of six, delighting this little cat-dog as he started licking everyone that very night.
Here’s a record of Lazarus’s first night home
Lazarus first bonded with his sister Hazel (on the left)
Hazel, only two months his senior, was like a peer to Lazarus, with similar smarts and size. They quickly became best buddies, sharing a crib and playful bites.
But as human kids grow slower, Lazarus soon outgrew his sister, finding a new best friend in his dad.
Here’s him keeping his dad company (and causing a bit of a ruckus) at work
And of course, Lazarus adores his mom
Lazarus is showered with love and returns it in abundance.
Worth noting, Brandon’s family are popular YouTubers. The video of Lazarus’s revival earned them a lot of attention (now over a million subscribers). They even made a YouTube account for Lazarus, where he’s grown up before our eyes…
The little cat, destined to perish that winter, found himself in a loving family, thanks to a compassionate twist of fate.
Fast forward a few years, our once unfortunate kitty transformed into a joyful little pup.
After five years of pure happiness,
Come late May 2020, Lazarus started having trouble urinating, often squatting like a chicken. His folks, not seasoned in cat care, didn’t grasp the gravity of the situation until June 2nd, when they frantically reached out to nearby animal hospitals. But without an appointment, they couldn’t get him seen urgently, and it wasn’t until the next morning that they managed to get him checked.
Lazarus was admitted to the hospital. His parents, a bit relieved, headed back home to work and look after the kids. However, soon after, the mother got a call from the hospital. Lazarus’s bladder was full of stones, and they were having a hard time inserting a catheter because of the numerous stones, causing him immense pain. Then, tragically, Lazarus had a heart attack…
They couldn’t save him.
Hearing this, the mother was stunned, phone in hand, unable to believe he was just fine that morning and now gone.
‘He nearly froze to death once and was brought back with CPR; did you do CPR on him?’ she asked.
The doctor informed her that they had been performing CPR on Lazarus for ten minutes and were now calling to see if they should continue or stop. If they stopped, she could come to pick him up.
Torn, the mother tearfully asked the doctor, ‘What would you do if he were your cat?’
The doctor responded, ‘I’d try CPR for another ten minutes.’
But this time, Lazarus didn’t make it back.
What is love, really?
Love is the strength that lets you hold on and then, when it’s time, let go.
When you meet someone (or a cat) you deeply love, you start a journey filled with joy. But remember, every journey has its endpoint.
Maybe back in the winter of 2015, little Lazarus, all alone, had a ticket for a spaceship back to Cat Star, but he missed his flight. So, he stayed on Earth for another five years. Until June 3, 2020, when Cat Star realized the oversight and sent a special ship to bring him home.
This time, he didn’t leave empty-handed as he did in his youth. He had a heavy suitcase, packed with treasures from his five years: his birth, his bowl, his toys, his family, his lifetime of memories, and the feeling of deep love…
Earth, his return trip wasn’t in vain.
And that’s the tale of Lazarus, the kitten who nearly ‘froze to death’.