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Rescue Kitten Paralyzed By Botched Microchip Insertion May Get Second Chance With Surgery

LOS ANGELES ( — A rescue kitten left paralyzed after a microchip was placed in his spinal cord is scheduled to undergo surgery Tuesday.

Six-week-old Muffin was dropped off at the Downey Animal Shelter after being found on the streets last week.

Loren Slama rescued the stray, who had to be microchipped as part of the adoption process. But she soon discovered something had gone horribly wrong.

"I noticed after 30 minutes his head started to dangle and it started to kind of crash. On the X-ray it was clearly demonstrated that the microchip was inserted all the way into the spine. That's why he was paralyzed," Slama said.

A look at his X-rays shows the chip lodged in Muffin's spine. The kitten now has to drag his entire left side.

"I was in a total state of shock," Slama said.

Muffin has surgery scheduled Tuesday at the City of Angels Veterinary Specialty Center, where a neurologist will attempt to remove the chip destroying his movements. However, there is no guarantee.

"It's a highly risky procedure. He might die during the surgery and even a few days after the surgery. However, we need to do the surgery because the longer the microchip stays into the spine the more damage it can cause," Slama said.

Slama asked Downey Animal Control to pay for the cost of the operation because its doctor implanted the microchip. They declined.

The Los Angeles Department of Animal Control and Care released the following statement: "This was an anomaly. We acted in accordance with the manufacturer's guidelines in terms of whether the kitten should be microchipped for its age and size.

"We have never had an incident like this before. However, we are conducting an investigation and determining whether or not any corrections need to be made."

To donate to Muffin's care, visit or visit the Access Animal Hospitals website. Once there, select "For Pet Owners," "Pay Online" and "Pay For L.A. Office" and use Muffin's I.D. number: 100-47-057.

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