OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT/Gray News) - King the cat is on the road to recovery with the help of a fish.
When he was rescued from a house fire on Dec. 21, King had burns on more than 50% of his body and is now benefitting from a procedure never done before at the Nebraska Humane Society (NHS).
NHS veterinarians faced the challenge of staving off infection, handling pain management, and playing a waiting game in orchestrating recovery.
They tapped a technique used by vets at UC Davis in which fish skins are used to create an organic bandage. The California veterinarians have had success with this in treating animals burned in wildfires.
The humane society says the fish skins provide wound protection, pain relief and they offer collagen protein that promotes healing.
The vets ordered the tilapia.
“We called around to so many places but the tilapia didn’t have skin and we need that," said veterinarian Katie James. "Finally, we found one at an Asian market and let it thaw here and then we filleted it and removed the skin.”
King got a disinfected tilapia skin cloak that was sutured into place on Sunday.
King has a long road to recovery, but the Humane Society team is hopeful about his chances. King will be under medical care for at least another six weeks.
The family, whose home is still too damaged to live in, is encouraged their cat now has a lot more people rooting for him.