There are so many benefits to having a pet around the house — sometimes they even save your life. Pets have been known to be unexpected life-savers in emergency situations, from deterring home intruders to detecting fires.
And recently, one heroic cat saved the day by preventing his owners from potentially catching lethal rabies.
If you’ve owned a pet cat, you know they have a habit of catching small animals like mice and birds. So when Suzanne Featherstone, of Olympia, Washington, saw her pet cat Meowly chasing a small animal, she initially didn’t think much of it.
“I heard the cat kind of running around, chasing something and I thought maybe she was playing with a toy or something,” she told KING 5 News.
“Then when I got up in the morning, I looked down —I’m like, ‘that doesn’t look like a mouse,'” she said.
The animal turned out to be a brown bat, who had flown inside the home through an open bathroom window.
Brown bats are common in the area, so it wasn’t anything extraordinary — except, it turned out, this bat was particularly deadly.
The bat was found to be positive for rabies. If the owners had come in contact with the bat in their house, they could’ve contracted the deadly disease.
“They told us if you have symptoms, it’s too late,” Suzanne said. “Who knows what would have happened?”
Thankfully, a potentially deadly tragedy was averted thanks to Meowly.
Meowly — who is named because her eyes resemble those of an owl’s — is up to date on her rabies vaccines, so she was not in danger after killing the bat. Suzanne and her husband David Hruska received a round of rabies shots because they had been sleeping in the room where the bat was found, according to KING 5, and will receive three more rounds of shots.
It was reportedly the first case of rabies detected in Thurston County this year, as well as the fourth in the state.
According to KING 5, brown bats are usually harmless and even help prevent the spread of diseases, however, about 6% of bats in Thurston County test positive for rabies, leading to one or two cases a year.
It isn’t possible to tell if a bat is rabid by sight, so anyone who comes in contact with one should call animal services.
Meanwhile, this couple is thanking their smart cat for saving them. “She’s our hero,” Suzanne said.
Great job, Meowly! Rabies is no joke, so we’re glad this hero cat stepped up and protected her owners from contracting the disease.
Share this story!