3-week-old abandoned bobcat slated to be euthanized by Springfield health department

A Missouri woman, certified in wildlife rehabilitation, can’t stop crying after the local health department told her they will be seizing a three-week-old baby bobcat on Wednesday to euthanize her and then send her  severed head to Jefferson City to be tested for rabies. Georgia Lafita, however is distraught:

“I’m crushed. That cat is perfectly healthy. Her eyes are clear. She has lots of energy, shows no signs of illness at all,” Georgia told the News-Leader when they visited her home on Tuesday.

The tiny bobcat’s story became news just one week ago when a property owner had been bulldozing his property and found the kitten. The man called the Missouri Conservation Department who told him to call Georgia who said she would be glad to care for the kitten until it could be weaned and then freed back into the wild. Another bobcat at the facility could teach the little one how to hunt. The man brought the kitten to Georgia’s home, but not before he reached into the crate and the tiny frightened kitten bit him in self-defense. Although she only had four teeth, the injury broke the skin. It was suggested the man consult a physician about the bite.

Meanwhile, Georgia has quarantined the kitten away from all other animals at the refuge, bottle feeds the baby and doesn’t allow anyone else to touch her  – as not to imprint on any human which could easily jeopardize her survival when eventually released out in the wild. As is done with any domestic animal who has bitten a human, they are kept in quarantine and under observation for ten days. If, at the end of that time, there are no symptoms, it is assumed the animal is rabies free. The ten day quarantine period still allows enough time for the person bitten to receive preventive care.

According to the Springfield-Green County Health Department, however quarantining the kitten is not an option because  enough scientific research has not been done on wild animals. Kathryn Wall, spokesperson for the health department, reiterated that had the kitten been a domestic breed, a quarantine would have been sufficient; not so for the tiny bobcat Georgia has named Lamia.

Big Cat Rescue located in Tampa, Florida has volunteered their services. On Wednesday morning, the organization posted the news on their Facebook page:

“The only humane solution is for the man who was bitten to take the rabies shots. It’s a couple thousand dollars, and BigCatRescue.org is willing to pay for them, if the bobcat kitten’s life can be spared. We’ve reached out to both the Springfield Health Dept. and the rehabber with this offer. We will keep you posted.”

(Photo of baby bobcat is not the subject kitten. Photo via Big Cat Rescue)

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13 replies
  1. maxiemom says:

    STUPID!!!! Why do these BEASTS the so called ‘health department’ insist upon killing an innocent kitten? The excuse they’re giving is just that: a pitiful excuse for murdering a wild animal! They would kill the little one and then announce (if it were done after the 10 days) that there was no rabies present, which there undoubtedly isn’t. These scumbags always want to kill wildlife wherever they can, and it’s despicable.

    Reply
  2. Nancy Raymond says:

    GEORGIA: I’d be taking that little baby and running ASAP to keep it hidden – give this little one a chance before jumping in with no proof it has rabies or any other disease. Springfield Health needs to stand back and wait until tests have been done. Big Cat Rescue is willing to pay for shots for the man who was bitten – so back off.

    Reply
  3. Cynthia Como says:

    Another disposable life?? There are other options and those options need to be taken!! More ridiculous humans wanting to annihilate an animal,a baby animal at that!! I absolutely and angrily disagree with the killing of this baby!!! Smh

    Reply
  4. pennysdacshund says:

    Well I hope the Man bitten has compassion and takes the shots… they are uncomfortable …. my good friend took them …. The State will probably still kill this little ‘ bobcat kitten…. Political Bullshit Rules … You Know!!!

    Reply
    • Barkley's Mom says:

      The man himself was trying to save the poor kitten, I can’t imagine he wants to have the kitten killed either.

      Reply
  5. Barkley's Mom says:

    Why the death sentence? What does not enough scientific research has not been done on wild animals” actually mean? It can’t be that much different than a kitten, let the poor thing be quarantined and let them pay for the rabies shots! .

    Reply
  6. Mary Ann Clark says:

    Please keep us updated on this case! If it happened to me I could not live with myself knowing by not taking the shots I would have caused the murder of this poor baby!

    Reply
  7. J. Martin says:

    This poor baby got scared and bit in self defense!!!! Heartless assholes … DON’T .. you fucking DARE KILL HER!!!!

    Reply
  8. Linda Rusch says:

    The kitten was afraid – no need to kill it – if not dead in ten days it means no rabies – and the man should take the shots if he is afraid. Sadly, the only solution most officals take is to kill – because life means nothing to them.

    Reply
  9. Michelle says:

    This is Horrible !!!Why is this Humans answer to everything KILL THEM !!Hope they feel really good about them selves when the test comes back NEGATIVE !!!!

    Reply

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