No One Believed Her Intuition—Until It Saved Her Cat’s Life

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Instagram: WarriorMochi

Instagram: WarriorMochi

A California woman didn’t plan on adopting a handsome cat in need. But two surprising back-to-back diagnoses proved she’d done the right thing—and it changed both their lives.

Perfectly imperfect timing

When Mochi’s human had first seen a tuxedo cat on a cat rescue website, rational thinking told her that it was an awful time to welcome another animal into the family. She’d been grieving the recent loss of another cat, and, even more significantly, had been diagnosed with breast cancer. Could the timing be any worse?

And yet, she couldn’t help how much she’d fallen for the feline, who’d been found abandoned before being brought into a shelter. So two days before a surgery she needed, Mochi’s human adopted the charming cat.

How can you say no to a face like that? / Instagram: WarriorMochi

How can you say no to a face like that? / Instagram: WarriorMochi

But after bringing Mochi home, something felt…off.

Mochi stopped playing with springs around the house, which had been among his favorite toys, and Mochi’s mom noticed that his belly looked more rotund than before.

Always trust your gut

“Everybody thought I was overreacting,” Mochi’s mom said, but she didn’t let their doubts sway the little voice in her head. “I just knew in my heart of hearts that something was wrong.”

So Mochi’s mom did some research online. When Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) appeared as a possible diagnosis, the reality hit her hard. “I tell people, it was like, my world had collapsed,” Mochi’s mom said.

Feline Infectious Peritonitis

FIP is a complex virus that still leaves much to be understood.

As Mochi’s mom noted, one reason it’s a difficult disease to identify is that symptoms vary widely. Some cats, like Mochi, develop swollen abdomens, but breathing trouble, difficulty with vision, and heart issues are among the many signs associated with FIP.

FIP is no laughing matter. / Instagram: WarriorMochi

FIP is no laughing matter. / Instagram: WarriorMochi

Unfortunately, the virus is a dire one that historically has almost always been fatal.

“I couldn’t believe that I was actually going to lose a second cat in the span of such a short time, less than six months,” Mochi’s mom said.

Beating the odds

The good news is, there’s been recent breakthroughs in treating FIP. Once a death sentence for cats, certain antiviral medications supporting the immune system have been game-changers in not only curbing symptoms but curing the virus altogether. Fortunately for Mochi, because his human listened to her gut and acted fast, he got into treatment quickly.

And it saved Mochi’s life.

Two peas in a pod! Instagram: WarriorMochi

Two peas in a pod! Instagram: WarriorMochi

“The day I found out that Mochi beat FIP was the happiest day,” Mochi’s human said. “I knew that he’d made it, that we really did it.”

A fateful happy ending

Mochi’s human didn’t just save Mochi’s life. According to her, the cat was critical in saving hers too, as taking care of him served as an important distraction from her own health woes.

It looks like there will be lots of snuggles in Mochi’s future. / Instagram: WarriorMochi

It looks like there will be lots of snuggles in Mochi’s future. / Instagram: WarriorMochi

Mochi’s human was delighted to report that she’s now officially cancer-free: “We’re both doing great.” And Mochi’s mom doesn’t think that’s a coincidence.

“I think he came into my life for a reason,” she said. “I felt like we were going through something together. [Mochi] totally changed my whole life—everything—for the better.”

I couldn’t find Mochi’s human’s name—it wasn’t included in the interview or in the video, and also isn’t displayed on any of Mochi’s socials—so I’m assuming it’s intentionally left out(?)

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The editorial team consists of experienced veterinarians, behaviorists, and other cat experts who are all dedicated to our mission of providing cat owners with the safest, most reliable information.