Russell the Burn Survivor’s Wonderful Update


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By Karen Harrison Binette



Russell is a burned kitty on the mend following a fire at his home, and his healing journey has attracted thousands of well-wishers. We shared Russell’s story on January 23, 2014 in Russell: Cat Burned in House Fire Gets Help, and in a followup on February 4, 2014, Russell Burned Kitty Improves.

Russell was severely burned when his family’s home was damaged by a fire on January 12.  He was presumed dead but turned up at the site of the fire a few days later.

He was rushed to Animal Emergency Hospital and Urgent Care in Raleigh, NC, where the dedicated and compassionate medical staff committed themselves to his healing. He remains in care there and has come a long way in his healing.

Animal Emergency Hospital and Urgent Care shared some important news on Russell’s recovery at Facebook on Monday, saying : “We have an exciting update on Russell, he is almost totally bandage free! The injuries on Russell’s rear legs did not heal as well as those on his front. When that healing plateaued Russell’s doctors decided to perform skin grafts to those areas. The skin grafts took well and Russell’s doctors are thrilled with his progress! We performed an additional procedure to both hocks (his ankles) and they have healed extremely well. The right rear leg is completely bandage free and the left rear leg has a small wrap. Russell is continuing to make great progress and continues to be the sweetest patient there is!”

The hospital wrote at Facebook in their previous update, on May 31: “Russell says “don’t worry, I’m fine!” Per the vet school recommendations we are waiting for the skin around his eyes to completely heal before attempting further surgery. His back paws are still healing and doing well! He has to wear an e collar to prevent him from pawing at his eyes or trying to take his bandages off (we took it off for the photo [The one below where he is not wearing the collar]).”

Russell’s medical care has been paid for by donations from animal lovers across the US and beyond. His family, who lost everything in the fire,  is greatly appreciative for the love and material support shown to their beloved cat. Russell is expected to rejoin his family after he is more completely recovered from his injuries.

You can see more, and follow future updates, at Animal Emergency Hospital and Urgent Care’s Facebook page.










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4 thoughts on “Russell the Burn Survivor’s Wonderful Update”

  1. Aww. He looks so cute! Not trying to sound mean here but he looks a little like a hamster with his little bare nose. Don’t worry boy, you’ll be back to your kitty self in no time! 🙂

  2. On Facebook I am friends with Russell’s page and his Veterinary hospital. I and many others get to see his daily progress & updates from the Staff at the Hospital. They always post videos and pictures for us. He gets a ton of mail daily with lots of cards and presents :D. He is such a sweetheart!! His staff is wonderful, they take such good care of him and the other babies that are sick. I can’t get enough of Russell & Justin (fire survivor). They are so brave and have hearts of gold. <3

  3. Last August our house also burned and we lost many of our cats. I rescue cats and many died in the fire as well as our own. It broke our hearts! Our vet here in Texas saved 5 adults 9 kittens. We had at the husbands Siamese was in terrible distress as no one saw him in the house and the firemen said all were dead. My husband just had to see the next morning that he was gone and much to our amazement he was barely breathing on our bed. .After three weeks and a lot of care from our vet we still have him and the 5 adult cats. The kittens found homes! It has taken some time but all but two are ok. Two still have a few breathing problems. My husband is disabled and it would have broken his heart to have lost Sojji. I think God spared him for that reason. We also lost everything but having a few of our babies has made the pain less and berable. So my heart goes out to this family and I am so thankful for all that you and everyone does. Thanks for the wonderful care and love you show all and giving back a family member to them. I know how much it means. It is everything! God Bless you all

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