On a hot summer day in Hawaii, a desperate call was made to a rescue group about a cat spotted in horrible condition.
A cat with severe mange was helplessly wandering the forrest blind and on the verge of death.
Keep reading to learn how one man’s love and commitment saved this cat from a life of pain and suffering.
A Shocking Discovery
A concerned individual made a post in Catopia Hawaii about a cat with horrible mange spotted in a local hiking area.
Bret Thompsett, a local rescuer and foster, sprang into action after hearing the news.
Bret and his girlfriend, Aimei, rushed to the site where the cat was spotted, but it was pitch black outside.
“At the last minute, just as I was about to leave, I spotted him,” Bret shared. “He looked like a rock.”
The cat’s mange was so bad that he hardly resembled a cat anymore.
His fur had hardened and his eyes were glued shut from the mange.
This poor cat had been wandering the forrest blind and in pain.
They couple knew they needed to act fast.
Rushing to the Rescue
Bret had some of his rescue equipment with him, but he did not have a net.
“He immediately bolted into the bushes,” Bret said. “But, I couldn’t stop thinking about him.”
Bret and Aimei returned to the site with a net on July 4th hoping to find the cat again.
“I found him and I netted him,” Bret said. “He didn’t put up much of a fight. He was clearly exhausted.”
Bret placed him in a carrier and took him to a fellow rescuer’s home.
They got to work on making the cat as comfortable as possible until he was able to see the vet.
Upon examining him, the truth was much worse than they imagined…
Assessing the Damage
They named the cat Bomber after being rescued on the 4th of July.
The rescuers friend spent the 4th of July bathing Bomber and assessing his condition.
Throughout all of this, Bomber didn’t make a peep.
It was clear he had given up hope a long time ago.
“He was super skinny, decently hydrated, and covered in sores,” Bret shared.
A Fighting Chance
After seeing Bomber’s picture, members of another rescue organization said that he had the worse case of mange they had seen in 30 years.
They advised the couple to euthanize Bomber, but they refused to accept this as an answer!
After the years of suffering Bomber had endured, Bret and Aimei were determined to give him a second chance.
Luckily, a vet tech paid a visit to Bomber at the foster’s house.
“The vet tech came along and said ‘No, he can be saved. We’re gonna save him’,” Bret said. “I’m all in!”
That night, Bomber began his treatment while Bret and Aimei waited by his side with fingers crossed.
“He got treated for the mange with Revolution,” Bret said. “He got subcutaneous fluids, vitamins, dewormer, and a bath. The whole time, he didn’t make a sound.”
Bomber waited patiently as his rescuers attempted to ease his pain.
After his initial treatment, Bomber was taken to the vet as soon as they opened.
It was there that they discovered Bomber was microchipped by a local shelter.
Bret called the shelter for more information.
Bomber was roughly 3.5 years old and had been neutered as part of a TNR project.
Sadly, there was nothing the shelter could do for him.
Bret and Aimei were Bomber’s only hope.
Road to Recovery
Apart from being FIV+ and having severe mange, Bomber was healthy.
Unfortunately, Bomber had to have half of his tail amputated because of irreparable damage caused by a fishing line.
Throughout all of his treatment, Bomber never complained.
He somehow knew he was in good hands.
Learning to Love
Thanks to Bret and Aimei’s endless love and patience, Bomber has made a full recovery from his mange!
He still needs time to rest and regain his strength after years of suffering.
However, Bomber now has a new challenge to face.
“He needs a lot of socializing,” Bret said. “We’re going to bring him back to being a socialized cat.”
It was clear Bomber had been abused in the past.
The couple started to notice some disturbing signs that confirmed his suspicions.
“We think he was badly abused because he recoils back, flattens his ears and squints his eyes when you touch him. Especially with men.”
Right Where He Belongs
The initial plan was for Bomber to be adopted out, however, Bret and Aimei soon realized that Bomber was already a part of their family.
Bomber had grown to love and trust his rescuers. He depended on them– he needed them.
After all he’d been through, it wouldn’t be right to make him start all over with a new family.
Bret and Aimei had fallen in love with Bomber. They needed him just as much as he needed them.
The decision was clear: Bomber wasn’t going anywhere!
He was right where he belonged all along.
Bomber, The Best Surrogate Dad!
It’s been almost a year since Bomber’s rescue and he’s made great strides in being socialized.
When he first arrived at Bret and Aimei’s home, he was scared and defensive.
Now he loves to be pet, snuggled, and will even play dress-up!
“It’s hard to believe that just a few months ago, BomBom wouldn’t let us look at him without hissing and growling!” said Aimei.
Not only is Bomber exceptionally loving and affectionate with his human parents, but he’s also volunteered to help Bret and Aimei with foster duties!
“Bomber is amazing with foster kittens. He loves to clean them and for the most part is very gentle,” said Bret.
Bomber is a doing a fantastic job at being a foster dad.
It’s not uncommon to find him laying in a snuggle puddle of kittens.
Considering how hard Aimei and Bret worked to earn his trust, it’s as if Bomber is paying it forward with the kittens.
“He sure loves his kittens. He’s a really good surrogate dad,” Bret laughed.
Bomber now spends every day being showered with love, attention, and delicious chicken flavored squeeze treats from his forever family.
For the first time in his life, he knows he is safe and taken care of.
“He will never be a colony cat again. We will do whatever it takes to show him what true love is,” Bret shared.
About Our Hero
Without Bret and Aimei’s help, Bomber wouldn’t be alive and healthy with a loving family by his side.
The couple selflessly sacrifices their time and resources to rescue cats that would otherwise suffer on the streets.
Bret and Aimei are entirely self funded and rely on the donations of kind hearted individuals to continue their life saving missions.
Please consider donating food or supplies directly to them through their Amazon Wishlist.
If you’d like to donate toward a rescue cat or kitten’s medical treatment, please click here.
Every cent goes toward the medical rehabilitation and long-term care of cats and kittens in critical condition.
Be sure to stay updated on Bret and Aimei’s latest rescue missions by following them on Instagram!
Click here to follow Bret: @hawaii_cat_dad_rescue
Click here to follow Aeimi: @mayiseeyourkitties