It’s not uncommon to read a story about an animal saving a human’s life. Dogs do it all the time. Cats, however, don’t become heroes quite so often.
But, sometimes they do. One stray cat hanging around a block of apartment buildings in Russia not only became an overnight hero, but it’s safe to say she can probably no longer be called a stray either.
The beautiful gray long-haired tabby named Masha, a Russian short version of the American “Marie,” had been hanging around the apartment buildings for a while. Usually, stray cats were dispatched pretty quickly.
Not Masha though. Everyone recognized her and she was so well-behaved nobody minded her company but still no one would adopt her.
These days everyone wants to claim her, and it goes without saying that Masha will never again have to hunt for her food. Everywhere she goes now she is met with hugs and pats and bits and pieces of kitty treats.
Masha wasn’t trying to be a hero. She was just looking for food and a warm place to spend a dark cold night when she came upon a box in a dimly lit stairwell. A typical curious cat, she peeked inside. And then Masha became a hero by simply doing what any human would have done.
And then Masha became a hero by simply doing what any human would have done.
She took care of the cold and hungry human infant she found there the only way she knew how. She laid close to it, gave it a bath and kept it warm and safe until help arrived.
Help came in the form of human hero 65-year-old Madeschda Machikowa, a resident of the building. When she heard what she thought were cries from a cat coming from the stairwell, she rushed down.
Her first thought was that it was Masha and being afraid that she was in trouble. What she found when she reached the box in the stairwell was certainly beyond any fears she might have had.
There was indeed Masha. But she wasn’t the one making the sounds. They were coming from the human baby she was curled around.
Machikowa immediately called an ambulance and waited with Masha and the baby until they arrived. When the paramedics got there they tried to take over but Masha wasn’t ready to give up her baby so quickly.
She kept a close eye on things, and even followed the medics when they carried the boy outside through the snow to the waiting ambulance. Vera Ivanina, a paramedic, told REN TV: “She was so worried about where we were taking the baby. She ran right behind us, meowing. She was really a rational creature.”
Although Masha begged quite loudly to go along in the ambulance, they finally convinced her to stay behind with Machikowa. She was assured that the baby would be getting the best possible care, so eventually, the protective kitty relaxed and enjoyed the treats that everyone in the building began to share with her.
The infant, a two or three-month-old boy who was found in clean clothes with a supply of clean diapers beside him, was deemed to be in good health by the medical team at the hospital where he was taken.
He apparently suffered no damage from exposure to the bitterly cold night. With total thanks for that going to Masha the cat.
Police are searching for the boy’s parents, but at the moment the most important thing is that when the parents abandoned him, someone as special as Masha was there to be an interim nanny.
He was a very lucky little boy. And Masha is a very special cat.