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Donations sought for cat with button eyes

Ferrari undergoes surgery but will likely lose sight

PORT ORANGE, Fla. – Animal welfare volunteers in Volusia County are seeking donations for a cat that needs surgery and currently has buttons for eyes.

Concerned Citizens for Animal Welfare of Volusia County said the cat, named Ferrari, was incorrectly labeled as feral and contracted a virus while fending for itself. The virus attacked the cat's body and eyes, one of which was ruptured, the group said.

Ferrari underwent emergency surgery and had buttons placed over his eyes, which will later be removed, the group said.

"The buttons hold the cat's third eyelid in place so blood vessels can bring blood to the cornea to help heal it quicker," said Jennifer Mizner of Freiberg's Healing Paws.

Mizner said the vet still uses the procedure, which was very popular in the 1950s and 60s, because it "still works."

Volunteers said the procedure will help save Ferrari's eyes, but the cat will likely lose its eyesight.  

"It is better for him that he keeps the actual eyes, though, as it will be more comfortable for him and less risky, with quicker healing time," the group said in an online post.

The total cost of the surgery, vet visits and medicine will be about $500, the group said.

Donations can be called to Freiberg's Healing Paws at 386-615-7297 or online at Concerned Citizens for Animal Welfare's website.