After enjoying a delicious meal, this adorable little feline deserves to be lovingly wrapped in a cozy towel. Meet Jumbo, a large tabby kitten with a rare esophageal condition that requires frequent but small feedings. After each meal, Jumbo needs to be kept upright for about 15-20 minutes. Fortunately, those who have been caring for Jumbo are more than happy to help. This furry cutie was one of two kittens – a black one and a tabby – rescued from the streets by the Orphan Kitten Club. Though they were the same age and possibly from the same litter, the tabby was weak and underweight compared to its larger black sibling. The founder of the rescue, Hanna Shaw, and her friend Andrew Martilla, took Jumbo and its sibling under their wing. It didn’t take long for them to realize that Jumbo’s fatigue was due to more than just a lack of food.
During the five-week period when Hannah and Andrew were taking care of the kittens, they noticed that one of them, Jumbo, was not gaining weight as expected. In contrast, another black kitten, playfully nicknamed Deep Dish, ate with gusto. However, upon a visit to the vet, it was revealed that Jumbo was suffering from a rare congenital condition called megaesophagus, wherein the esophagus is enlarged and fails to push food into the stomach effectively. This leads to food stagnation, vomiting, and weight loss. Nonetheless, Hannah explains that this condition can be treated by keeping the kitten upright for about 15-20 minutes after eating to help the food slide down into the stomach due to gravity. To make things easier, they began wrapping Jumbo in a towel, creating an adorable “purrito.”
When it comes to adorable kittens wrapped in towels, Americans like to use the term “Purrito”. This clever word mashup combines “purr” (the sound cats make when content) and “burrito” (a yummy Mexican dish).
Although Jumbo’s current condition may be permanent, Hanna remains optimistic and believes that there may be surgical or other medical options available for the kitten in the future.
Jumbo is currently consuming a combination of cat food and a specially formulated nutritious mixture, which is being served in smaller portions but more frequently than traditional feeding methods. He seems content to be swaddled in a towel, purring away in the loving embrace of Hannah or Andrew. Despite the additional effort required to care for a sickly kitten, his caretakers don’t find it burdensome. Hannah reports that Jumbo was severely underweight when he first arrived, but their specialized approach to feeding has led to encouraging weight gain.
After two months, Jumbo and Deep Dish are now available for adoption. While the black kitten won’t require any special attention, Jumbo needs a special owner who can give him the extra care he needs because of his illness. But Hannah and Andy are confident that they will find someone who will take care of Jumbo with all their heart.