When Janine DeMartini decided to adopt a shelter kitty, she set her sights on Herbie, a sweet green-eyed boy who was just days from being euthanized. But here’s what she couldn’t have known at the time: by fostering this friendly, affectionate cat from the Staten Island Hope Animal Rescue, she was saving not just one, but two lives.
Herbie to the Rescue
When Janine went to bed, the normally quiet Herbie started meowing loudly and jumping on and off the bed. At first, she chalked it up to his wanting food or wanting to be let out of the bedroom. But when the usually mild-mannered cat kept it up, DeMartini began to worry that something was wrong.
So she got up to see what was going on, and as she did this, he jumped off the bed and headed for the bedroom door. Herbie kept turning his head and looking at her, and it almost seemed like he was imploring her to follow him.
She knew this wasn’t his usual behavior.
“I was so tired and I was like, ‘all right, he’s just being a cat,'” she said. “But something said this is not his personality. There’s something wrong.”
She followed Herbie and opened her young daughter’s bedroom door. And got the shock of her life.
“Isabella had turned over while sleeping and had pulled a toy blanket over her face,” Janine said.
And, Janine added, little Isabella was making “smothering noises.”
But Herbie knew just what to do
He hopped right into baby Isabella’s crib and began tugging the blanket off of her face with his claws. Isabella was only a few months old, and Janine knew that if this sweet cat hadn’t found her, the tiny girl might have died.
“I pulled the blanket off of her and held her. I almost lost her had I not listened to Herbie and followed him.”
Now, this sweet boy is a permanent member of the DeMartini family. Janine was only planning to foster him until he could be adopted by someone else. But now that’s changed.
“He saved my daughter,” she said. “Herbie really is the hero.”
And Herbie and little Isabella are best buddies.
Herbie’s not the only hero cat
Believe it or not, it’s not as unusual as you might think for cats to save people’s lives. It’s happened more than a few times before.
A kitty in Holly Springs, North Carolina saved his family from carbon monoxide poisoning. Someone had left the family car running in the garage overnight, and the cat began meowing and waking his owners before the odorless gas could become lethal. And another kitty, named Schnautzie, alerted her owner after a broken pipe began leaking toxic gas.
Schnautzie’s owner, Trudy Guy, said the valiant little kitty woke her up by pawing her on the nose. When Guy checked things around the house, she heard what sounded like a roar coming out of the bathroom. Further inspection showed that a gas pipe outside the bathroom had ruptured just above the shut-off valve.
She added that firefighters told her that the gas levels in the air were so high the house could have blown up.
You can watch Herbie, the hero kitty in action in this video from Jackson Galaxy’s show My Cat From Heaven.
Do you have a story about a hero kitty? Tell us in the comments below.
Featured image by Animal Planet via YouTube video