Cat with Diabetes Escapes, Somehow Lives for Nearly a Week Without Insulin

Cat with Diabetes Escapes, Somehow Lives for Nearly a Week Without Insulin

This story was originally shared on The Animal Rescue Site. Submit your own rescue story here. Your story just might be the next to be featured on our blog!

Lily is our 14-year-old insulin-dependent cat. We adopted her as a rescue along with her brother when they were 12-weeks-old. We moved with her cross country three times.

At our current home, she escaped one night and everything that could possibly go wrong, went wrong. We didn’t even know for a few hours that she had gotten out - not until the other cats growled and hissed at something outside, and I looked outside and saw Lily. My heart just sank.

A few times we saw her and tried to catch her, but she was intent on her adventure. We waited up all night thinking she’d come back quickly, but she didn’t. What followed were six excruciating days of exhaustive search, day and night, in a large community with four lakes and lots of woods.


On the sixth day, we despaired and thought there was no way she could have survived weather and diabetes. That afternoon, we got a call from a neighbor close to half a mile away who said she thought our cat was lying outside her door but was very sick. Words cannot describe the feeling of seeing her again, since a loss of a cat with no closure is a very difficult thing to live with.

We rushed her to an emergency hospital and found she was in renal failure with a 50% chance of survival. Twelve hours later, the vet gave her a 10% chance. But then he reversed course and said, “I don’t want to give up on a cat who did not give up. Let me try a more aggressive treatment that I usually wouldn’t do, but it’s her only chance. If she doesn’t respond, then take her home overnight and I will come to your house and put her down, because she tried so hard to get home.”

We went back next morning fully expecting to bring her home to die, BUT she had responded to the treatment! That evening, we brought her home, but she wouldn’t eat or drink. What followed were more days at her vet getting IV fluids to improve her kidneys, but then she worsened. Our vet said, “Don’t give up. She hasn’t given up.”

We started giving her fluids at home. Over a month, her kidneys have improved to almost normal values. She is eating, drinking, and playing, looking more and more like the Lily she was before she escaped. It’s been a roller coaster, but it is still inexplicable to me that this tough tiny warrior has made such a miraculous recovery, and tells me that we should never give up on our cats as long as they tell us they still want to fight.


We will be forever grateful that our Lily has finally made it home.

Story submitted by Sara from Naples, Florida.

This story was originally shared on The Animal Rescue Site. Share your very own rescue story here!

Guest Contributor

Stories from our readers, contributions from our friends in the animal rescue world, updates from charitable partners, and more!

Back to blog