You might forgive people for passing by a garbage bin near a business in Iowa — and not hearing the cry for help. After all, who would be listening for that barely audible plea? Or that faint rustling of amidst the candy wrappers and cups and fast-food debris? And who would ever expect someone to have thrown a kitten there?
But a man did stop. And it made all the difference in the world for a kitten, who had been dumped there at just a few days old.
The passer-by reached into the bin and pulled out a tiny, mewling kitten just clinging to life. He called his mom right away, and his mom got in touch with Diann Helmers, who runs a rescue group called Agape Fosters.
Helmers, who happened to be in a movie theater at the time, rushed to pick up the fragile feline.
“When I met her to pick him up, this lady had gotten him started on bottle feeding,” Helmers tells iHeartCats. “She was weeping and blessed me and the kitty and kissed and hugged me.”
The kitten spent a few days with Helmers, getting bottlefed every few hours — along with a name: O’Brian.
“He’s Irish and has red hair, at least I say he is,” Helmers adds.
And most importantly, O’Brian got a chance to prove he was far from disposable.
He’ll need to grow a lot stronger before he’s ready for a forever home, but O’Brian has already put his dark past behind him. A veterinary technician has already offered to foster him.
“He’s doing great and is getting started in canned food this week,” Helmers says says.
And those Irish eyes are already smiling.
You can follow O’Brian’s journey to health on the group’s Facebook page.