On December 23, 2013, Crash’s Landing received the best Christmas gift ever: We received word that we had won a $10,000 Holiday Wishes grant award from the Ellen Degeneres Show and the Petco Foundation. Winners were chosen based on the quality of the organization’s overall work and the impact of their top success story. Our winning entry was titled, “Squirt’s Stunning Rescue.” Here’s what Petco Foundation had to say to us:
“Congratulations again on your award of a Holiday Wishes grant. Your story was truly inspiring this holiday season. Your organization should be very proud that your work and story stood out as a winner among 4,500 applications. All of us at the Petco Foundation are very proud of you and thankful for the work you do to help animals in need and the people who love them. This grant money is to be utilized as you see fit to meet the needs of the animals in your community, and is unrestricted.”
Here is our winning entry, “Squirt’s Stunning Rescue.”
Squirt’s Stunning Rescue
This little kitty’s journey to Crash’s Landing began on a cold March night in 2013 with a cruel toss from a car window – while the vehicle was speeding at 70 mph down the freeway. Initially hitting the ground in the left lane, the little ball of black and white fluff rolled under a car in the middle lane, then scored a near miss under a truck belonging to one James Schiero (rhymes with “hero”) traveling in the right lane. James (a/k/a “Our Hero”) was on his way to work at a time not usual for him, but just in the nick of time for the star of our story. When kitty came to rest a foot from the embankment, she was stunned and shaken… and not yet out of danger. After bringing his truck to a quick stop, Our Hero climbed over a fence, hurried down the embankment, and plucked the emaciated, filthy, and anemic little girl from the side of the road just as a semi whooshed by, blasting its air horn.
Because the drama occurred on Our Hero’s way to work, he brought the traumatized little sprite with him and settled her in a borrowed box to let her gather her wits. On break, Our Hero treated kitty to a tasty Slim Jim. Kitty purred. But that Slim Jim didn’t do her any favors. The five-month-old feline suffered from dreadful diarrhea, and indeed, may have been discarded because of it.
The next morning, Our Hero carried kitty to the clinic where our founder and vet extraordinaire, Dr. Jen, performed a medical exam. Amazingly, there were no broken bones. Kitty promptly settled in, eating her worth in vittles. But another dilemma soon reared its head: the next few days revealed just how injured kitty was – terrible traumatic lesions from her tumble across the rough road came to the surface. It was touch and go, but kitty began healing and made a television debut, where a near-miss mess earned kitty her name, “Squirt.” We know one reporter who is exceedingly thankful for Dr. Jen’s quick reflexes.
Finally healed, Squirt was adopted by Jenny Kozeny and her family. And just look at Squirt now! She has cozied up to the Kozenys, transformed into a gorgeous, sleek kitty and whiles away her days playing and sleeping.