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Cat Defender

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Friday, April 21, 2006

Möhre Saves a Newborn Infant Abandoned in the Cold on a Doorstep in Köln

Möhre und Dirk Prager

A jet-black cat named Mohre is the toast of Koln after his incessant loud meowing and scratching on the inside of the door led to the discovery of a newborn infant that had been abandoned on his owner's doorstep.

Thirty-five-year-old Dirk Prager was sitting in his kitchen drinking coffee at 5 a.m. last Thursday when Möhre ("Carrot" in English) started raising a ruckus. When he refused to quieten down, Prager looked out the window and saw something lying on his doormat that he at first thought was another cat. Getting to his feet, he went to chase away the cat, but when he opened up his front door he got the surprise of his life.

Lying there was not a cat but rather an infant boy wrapped in a white bedsheet. Although the newborn was only a few hours old, he had been wiped clean of blood and his navel tied off with a clothespin. Prager immediately took him inside and called an ambulance.

At a hospital on Amsterdamer Straße, an examination determined that although the newborn was suffering from a mild case of hypothermia, he was otherwise in good shape. Since the overnight temperature was only thirty-two degrees Fahrenheit, the boy could have easily succumbed to either hypothermia or pneumonia had not Möhre come to his aid.

"The cat is a hero," Uwe Beier, a spokesman for the Kölner Polizei told Reuters on April 15th. "Its loud meowing got the attention of the homeowner and saved the baby from suffering life-threatening hypothermia." (See "Cat in Germany Saves Baby's Life.")

Nurses at the hospital have christened the boy Simon Sonnenschein. "Weil er überlebt hat, steht Simon auf der Sonnenseite des Lebens," nurse Monika told the Köln Express on April 18th. (See "Kleiner Simon Sonnenschein. Hallo Mama -- guck mal, so suss bin ich!")

Despite his rough introduction to life in this wicked old world, Simon is expected to be fine. "Simon geht es inzwischen gut, aber er ist noch nicht ganz uber den Berg," Vize-Klinik-Chef Uwe Knop told the Koln Express on April 15th. (See "Von Kater Möhre gerettet Baby Simon wartet auf seine Mama.")

In the same news account, nurse Martina Beier was a good deal more enthusiastic. "Er ist sehr aktiv und hat grossen Hunger. Alle vier Stunden bekommt er ein Flashchen."

Simon Sonnenschein

In the meantime, the police continue to search for Simon's mother. Neighbors and public transit riders have supplied them with a general description of her and an artist's sketch based upon what has been learned has been circulated by the local media.

A detective told the Express in the April 15th article cited supra that they are looking to reunite her with her son as opposed to wanting to punish her. "Simon soll mit seiner Mama aufwachsen. Das ist unser aller Wunsch," he said.

Nonetheless, DNA tests have been conducted on the infant and plans are under way to place him with a foster family as soon as he is well enough to leave the hospital.

It is widely believed that the young mother left Simon on Prager's doorstep because his lights were burning although it is possible that she made her selection based upon his address: 13 Am Emberg Strasse.

Regardless of whatever rationale she was operating on, she certainly guessed right although it is doubtful that she could ever have imagined that behind unlucky number thirteen there would be a cat who was destined to turn out to be her son's savior.

Photos: Schwaiger, Koln Express ( Mohre and Dirk) and Meyer, Koln Express (Simon).