Bravo to Logan! Horse helps save tiny kitten’s eyesight

Joy Smith with Logan and Bravo.
Joy Smith with Logan and Bravo.

A tiny kitten named Bravo has a 1200-pound horse named Logan to thank for saving his eyesight.

Bravo had already lost his right eye because of a virus when he arrived at the FieldHaven Feline Center in Lincoln, California. Veterinarians there spotted a small corneal ulcer on his left eye. Such ulcers are a common eye injury in  cats, and causes typically include trauma to the eye, a foreign body in the eye, infection, inadequate tearing, and abnormal structure of the eye.

As the 14-week old kitten had only one eye, it was crucial that his vision be saved.

The use of autotologus (cells or tissues obtained from the same individual) eye serum is commonly used in veterinary medicine to accelerate the healing process of the cornea. Blood is taken from the patient, spun down in a centrifuge, and the resulting serum is applied as eye drops twice daily.

But Bravo was far too small for the blood draw, so Joy Smith, the founder of FieldHaven Feline Center, stepped in to help, offering Logan to donate serum.

Logan's blood was drawn for the serum donation.
Logan’s blood was drawn for the serum donation.

“Serum is one of the components in blood, said Dr Heather Kennedy, a veterinarian at FieldHaven Feline Center.

“We draw blood from the animal, spin it down to get serum, and we use that as an eye drop.”

She asked Smith about getting some blood from a horse: “they have gallons of blood”, Smith said. “So they took the blood, spun it down, and treated the eye with the serum, and the eye is doing really well.”

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