A three-month-old tabby kitten who was burned by caustic chemicals earlier this month is recovering slowly but surely, animal care officials said Wednesday.
Phoenix the kitten was burned by caustic chemicals and left at a Los Angeles shelter, according to a spokesperson with the Helen Woodward Animal Center, where Phoenix is being cared for.
He was transferred to the Helen Woodward Animal Center in San Diego with swollen front paws and a damaged tail, face and ears.
His tail was amputated and he was struggling to walk in his front-feet bandages when NBC 7 first learned of his arrival to the San Diego shelter.
Now, Phoenix is still undergoing medical treatment for his burns and has even managed to walk on his mitten-like bandages (see video below). His paws are still severely damaged, though.
“His nose and chin are healing well," said Stephanie Oba with the center. "His ears are healing, but slowly. His paws have improved a little."
Oba said Phoenix has also developed an endearing habit from staff at the center.
"We discovered that he really loves chin rubs,” he said.
Staff at the center said they named him Phoenix because he "rose from the ashes" and had a resilient and warm spirit.
The center does not know whether the chemicals were purposely poured on the kitten or not.
Veterinarians say Phoenix has a long path to recovery but is thriving under their care and will be closely monitored.
He'll be available for adoption in about three weeks. Adoption information can be found on the center's website.
Here's a video taken by staff at the center on Wednesday of Phoenix walking.
Video courtesy of the Helen Woodward Animal Center.