A Sturgeon Bay woman has a lot to be thankful for after her newly adopted cat woke her from a diabetic reactive seizure just hours after bringing him home.
Amy Jung and her son, Ethan Jung, originally went to the Door County Humane Society on Feb. 8 to play with the cats, not bring one home. That all changed when Jung, 36, saw Pudding lying on a counter. She made a quick decision to adopt Pudding and his pal Wimsy.
When the Jungs arrived home, the 21-pound, orange-and-white cat made himself right at home, acting as if he had always been there.
“He just really took right over. Really second nature,” she said.
At around 9:30 p.m., she went to bed and about 1½ hours later the prodigious kitty came to her rescue.
Jung, who was diagnosed with diabetes at the age of 4, had begun to have a seizure. According to Jung, Pudding planted his weight on her chest and, when he could not wake her, began swatting her face and biting her nose.
“Anything he could to pull me out of it (the seizure),” she said.
The manhandling – cathandling? – worked. She woke up and the convulsions stopped long enough for her to call to her son for help. When Ethan did not respond to the calls, the cat ran to his room and jumped on his bed.
Ethan later told her that he didn’t know anything was wrong until the giant cat landing on the bed woke him up.
Jung is convinced that she would not have survived the night if Pudding had not intervened.
“If something or someone hadn’t pulled me out of that, I wouldn’t be here,” she said.
The next day she spoke with her doctor about her seizure and her cat’s unusual actions. The doctor told her he had heard of animals alerting their owners to a health crisis but had never known anyone who had experienced it personally.
“Realistically you can’t be without him,” he told her. Jung is currently in the process of registering Pudding as a therapy animal.
Pudding will also sit at her feet and meow when her blood sugar is low, she said.
At first sight Pudding’s only significant attribute is that he is really, really big. As Jung, wearing a red Humane Society fleece, told her story, Pudding lay curled on the couch apparently unaware of his new role in her life.
At one point he walked off, jumped up on a table and began chewing on a plant. Jung retrieved him and set him on the floor. Seemingly unaffected by the move, Pudding ambled off.
Carrie Counihan, Door County Humane Society executive director, has known the laidback cat on and off for years and finds the story believable.
“I think it’s an amazing story, and I knew Pudding pretty well from his time at the shelter,” Counihan said.
Pudding, born July 2003, was originally surrendered to the Humane Society in February 2008 due to his owner’s allergies. In April 2008 he was adopted and lived with his last owner until January, when she died.
When Pudding and Wismy came to the shelter, Pudding would lounge on Counihan’s desk, never acting pesky.
Hearing that Pudding had acted out of character was enough to convince her.
“That, for me, makes the story really stand out,” she said. “That he was sensing something and reacting to it.”
The Humane Society is glad that there is a happy ending for both Pudding and Jung.
“We’re glad that she called us (about what happened) and that Pudding went into her family that day,” Counihan said.
Contact Samantha Hernandez at firstname.lastname@example.org or (920) 743-3321, ext. 112.