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Cat Named 'Starfish' Struck By Car In South Boston, Loses Leg

BOSTON (CBS) - Starfish, a white cat, is lucky to be alive after being struck by a car and having her leg amputated.

Starfish was rushed to the MSPCA's Angell Animal Medical Center on April 27 by a good Samaritan who found her injured and cowering under a car on the corner of Summer and East Second streets in South Boston during a rain storm.

"I was afraid she might take off into traffic if I reached for her, so I ran inside to grab my dog's leash and a cardboard box and, once I got back outside, she tried to crawl toward me but could barely move," said Laura Gallagher, who ultimately managed to get Starfish into the box and drove her to Angell Animal Medical Center.

Starfish cat loses leg
Starfish was rushed to the MSPCA's Angell Animal Medical Center after a good Samaritan found her injured under a car in South Boston during a rain storm. (MSPCA photo)

Starfish, believed to be about seven months old, weighs about eight pounds and was wearing a red collar but had no identification tag or microchip, making it impossible to identify an owner.

She arrived critically injured, with her left hind leg nearly crushed and her rear right paw stripped away, likely from being trapped and dragged under the wheel of a car.

Dr. Spencer Yeh of Angell's surgery team performed a two-hour surgery to repair Starfish's leg fracture and attached an "external fixator," a set of steel pins and bars attached to the outside of her leg which will be removed once the fracture heals.

"I estimate that the fixator will come off in about four weeks, after which we'll determine if she needs any follow-up treatment or if she's able to leave our facility for good," said Yeh.

Starfish-cat leg amputated
Despite antibiotic treatment, the wound on Starfish's right leg continued to fester and had to be amputated on May 8. (MSPCA photo)

Despite antibiotic treatment the wound on Starfish's right leg continued to fester and had to be amputated on May 8.

The medical team believes her surgically repaired hind leg will heal in about four weeks, after which — so long as other wounds to her abdomen have also healed — she will be placed for adoption.

Anna Rafferty-Fore, associate director of the MSPCA's Boston adoption center, is already sorting out Starfish's future.

"After all she's been through, Starfish deserves a home where she can live safely indoors surrounded by people who love her, and we won't stop looking until we find just that kind of home for her," she said.

Starfish-cat under-car
Starfish was found injured underneath this car in South Boston. (Photo: Laura Gallagher)

Gallagher is glad she was there to spot Starfish when the feline was injured and in drastic need of help that fateful day.

"I'm just so glad that she's no longer in danger and can return to life inside a safe and warm home with people who adore her, as every cat deserves," said Gallagher.

Gallagher also set up a GoFundMe page to offset Starfish's medical bills and, to date, the page has raised nearly $2,800. Gallagher plans to donate any remaining funds to help other homeless animals.

Anyone interested in adopting Starfish can email

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