Woman Thought She Rescued a Kitten, but She Was Surprised to See What It Grew Up to be
Florencia Lobo, a teenager from Santa Rosa de Leales Argentina, was fishing near her home when she heard a strange, faint noise, like a bird chirping.
But investigating further, she discovered that it was actually two week-old kittens in a nearby cave in desperate need of help. According to El Tucumano, their mother was dead, apparently attacked by another animal. The kittens were starving and near-death.
So Florencia took the kittens home to care for them, naming them Dani and Tito. Sadly, Dani was weak and died a week later, but Tito became her loyal pet, who she took loving care of.
"He followed me everywhere,” Florencia told El Tucumano. "He never lacked any meat, milk, or anything where I live. He was a pet for me.”
But she noticed that Tito had more energy than the average house cat: "He likes to play, bite and run pretty fast," she said. "He liked to get on the table and jump from there.”
But all that energy ended up hurting Tito, after a jump injured one of his legs.
Florencia took Tito to the vet to get the leg taken care of… but was surprised by the vet's response:
"The veterinarian did not even know what it was," she said. "He suspected it was not a normal cat.”
Other vets were out of her price range, so she reached out to an animal expert to shed light on what exactly what Tito was.
The expert revealed that Tito was no ordinary house cat—he was a jaguarundi puma.
Not only was Florencia shocked, but she now had a difficult decision to make. This was a wild animal she was caring for all along, and while she had grown to love him as a pet, she knew the puma would be better off growing up in his natural habitat.
“If you raise and spoil him, you feel like he is yours and it causes you pain that they take him away,” she said. “But deep down I know that it is good that they took him and will return it to nature.”
Florencia had some concerns about how Tito would adjust to the wild—if he would miss human care, if he had the necessary survival instincts to make it on his own. But Tito was taken in by the Argentine Animal Rescue Foundation (FARA), who will treat Tito’s leg and rehabilitate him before sending him back into the wild.