Grandpa gets help, with outpouring of support from the community

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Grandpa is recovering from his injuries at Greene County Veterinary Medical Center. Photo, Erin Freeman

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Grandpa the cat won’t quite be home in time for Christmas, but he is doing well in his recovery at the vet after being shot in the head and is expected to return home by the end of the week.

Grandpa is the beloved pet of Anthony Hayes and Erin Freeman of Greeneville, Tennessee, and he has spent the better part of December at Greene County Veterinary Medical Center, recovering from injuries sustained when 19 year old Zachary S. Brewer, a neighbor unknown to the family, shot him in the head with a pellet gun on December 10.

Grandpa is doing well and is on track to return home, and his vets are now hoping he will make a full or nearly full recovery. There remains a concern that he may lose a paw as a result of nerve damage caused by the assault.

Despite his old-man name, given  because of the tufts of fur growing out of his ears, Grandpa is still a kitten at 6months old.

“He is doing good and made some improvement,” Anthony Hayes said of the young cat’s most recent report from the vet.

According to a story in the Greenville Sun, Grandpa tried to stand to greet his petparents when they visited him Monday.

“He was trying to put pressure on all four(s). He tried to stand up,” Anthony said. “It was hard to not take him home with us.”

Grandpa’s recovery is a community effort, with help from his caring veterinary staff and donations from members of the public.

“We want to absolutely thank [those community members who donated toward grandpa’s medical bills] for thinking about our animal in this situation,” Anthony said. “I think it’s a wonderful thing that people in the community make a difference in the life of a cat.”

Grandpa’s assailant has been charged with one felony count of aggravated cruelty to animals, and is free on bond while awaiting his scheduled January 5, 2015 court appearance at Greene County General Sessions Court.

Grandpa’s petparents say they have no idea why anyone would want to harm Grandpa, who they describe as a loving pet who has become part of their family. They are grateful for Grandpa’s recovery and the help they have received.

“The outlook is looking a lot better, for sure,” Anthony said.

“I’d like to personally thank each and every one of [the donors].”

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Read the full story in the Greenville Sun.

Anyone who wants to help can send a check made out to the Greene County Veterinary Medical Center, 247 Baileyton Road, Greeneville TN 37745. Checks can specify “Grandpa Vet Bills.”

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