One stray cat's incredible recovery


October 4, 2018

When Charlie arrived at Animal Humane Society's Woodbury location, we honestly weren’t sure if he would make it through the night.

Found as a stray, he was extremely dehydrated, covered in grime, and his skin was so tough and inflamed that he could hardly move. We think he was exposed to a paint thinner or other chemical that coated his fur and caused this awful condition.

Charlie befor
Charlie Before

Unable to do much more, we gave Charlie pain medication, a steroid for skin inflammation, and kept him as comfortable as possible. Amazingly, he seemed to love attention despite the discomfort he was in, purring and kneading when touched.

After a week of care, his fur started to come off in chunks, leaving perfectly healthy skin underneath. As he healed, Charlie became more and more outgoing. He responded to his name, even waking up from a deep sleep to run to the front of his kennel and greet AHS staff.

Charlie and his new family
Charlie and his new family

A month later, Charlie has almost fully recovered with his fur slowly growing back in. 

Charlie was snatched up quickly after he was featured on our Instagram. Annie, his adopter, instantly fell in love as he reminded her of her old cat who she recently lost to lung cancer. "As soon as he came home, he was bravely exploring the house and cuddling up on our lap," says Annie. "We’re so excited to have him join our family!"

Meet more animals like Charlie, each with their own unique stories and personalities. Hundreds of dogs, cats, and critters in our care are waiting to find their new homes.


For caring, compassionate advice and resources to address all your animal concerns.

Contact the Pet Helpline