Lifestyle & Human Interest

Neglected Cat Dragging Around 5 Pounds of Matted Fur Gets Incredible Makeover


It was December of 2016 when The Anti-Cruelty Society of Chicago received a phone call about a cat, described as a “walking carpet” living alone in an elderly man’s basement.

When investigators arrived, they met Sinbad, a Persian cat who had been so neglected that he was trapped in his own fur.

Sinbad was carrying around five pounds of extra fur, mangled into knots and covered in feces.


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For those unfamiliar with Sinbad’s story: In December of 2016, the humane investigators of The Anti-Cruelty Society went to the home of an elderly man, after receiving a message from a utility worker who said they’d seen a cat in the man’s basement that appeared to be “dragging a carpet.” Upon arrival, the investigator met a man who was unable to care for himself, and a cat that had experienced extreme neglect. The cat was an 8 year old Persian named Sinbad. He hadn’t been groomed in a very long time and was dragging around over 5 lbs of matted fur, dirt and feces. The man turned Sinbad over to the Society and his rescue and rehabilitation began! The poor kitty was grateful for any affection he received as he had his cocoon of mats removed. To be continued! #sinbadthecat #sinbadthesurvivor #catrescue #catsofinstagram #persian #adoptdontshop

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Sinbad could scarcely move, using only his front legs to shuffle himself around the lonely basement. His back legs had atrophied from the weight and pain of all his extra fur.

“Sinbad came in to our shelter after a utility worker saw him in the home of an elderly gentleman. The man wasn’t able to care for himself very well, and that was evident in Sinbad’s condition,” Elliott Serrano, Sinbad’s new owner, told Love Meow.

The elderly man agreed to surrender Sinbad, and shelter staff members got right to work on treating Sinbad’s painful, overgrown coat.

“He was so tolerant and sweet during the grooming which was grueling. It took hours,” Serrano said.

“Once free of the mats he just wanted to lie down on somebody’s lap or in his bed.”

Serrano took Sinbad home for what was supposed to be temporary foster care. But love for the cat quickly swelled in Serrano’s heart, and he knew that Sinbad was meant to live with him for the remainder of his senior cat years.

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Sinbad began to improve under Serrano’s watchful care. The cat regained his appetite and was soon showing off a fresh new coat of healthy, snow-white fur.

Serrano said that despite living in a neglectful environment for so long, Sinbad is sweet, affectionate and happy.

Serrano has social media accounts set up for Sinbad, where followers can watch the cat’s daily antics of lounging around the house and tolerating photo shoots.

“I’m just astounded at how he just loves people, even though people haven’t always treated him very well,” Serrano said. “It’s a lesson we could all learn.”

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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