“Masha the Cat” a hero for saving abandoned infant

 

By Dave Andrusko

Thanks to Masha, the long-haired red tabby cat, the baby was not harmed by being left in the cold.

Thanks to Masha, the long-haired red tabby cat, the baby was not harmed by being left in the cold.

Unlike most baby abandonment stories, this little boy was not a newborn but about 2 ½ months old, and showed no signs of abuse or neglect. But had it not been for a “corpulent” stray nicknamed “Masha the cat,” there is no doubt the infant would not have survived subfreezing temperatures in the Kaluga region of Russia.

Masha has been designated a hero for using her “own body to shelter an abandoned infant from winter’s deep freeze,” according to the Washington Post’s Karoun Demirjian.

Masha, a communal cat, found the infant Saturday night in an entryway. When Nadezhda Makhovikova heard cries, Makhovikova initially thought it was the cat in distress. “When I went down, I saw it was a baby crying,” Makhovikova told REN TV. The long-haired red tabby cat had climbed in the box with the little boy.

“Reports said the baby had been left with a pacifier, bottle and diapers, and was dressed warmly, wearing a little hat, as residents described him,” Demirjian reported, “though he likely would have had difficulty staying warm enough to survive a whole night in the sub-freezing temperatures in the area.”

But Masha’s devotion was not exhausted. Residents called for an ambulance which took the baby to a local hospital but not, Demirjian wrote,

“before Masha would try to accompany the baby on the way.”

“She was so worried about where we were taking the baby,” Vera Ivanina, a paramedic who responded, told REN TV. “She ran right behind us, meowing. She seemed quite intelligent.”

A hospital spokesman told Central European News, “The baby had only been outside for a few hours and thanks to Masha … he was not damaged by the experience.” He’s been given a checkup and declared fit and healthy.

Officials are now looking for the boy’s parents.