British Columbia·Photos

This might be the saddest cat on the internet

BenBen was brought into a Vancouver clinic with a crushed spine, cauliflower ear, and infected wounds. Now his owner is using the cat's social media following to raise funds for other animals in need.

BenBen was brought into a Vancouver clinic with a crushed spine, cauliflower ear

BenBen has been dubbed by many as the saddest cat on the internet. (@benbencatcat/Instagram)

It's hard to believe now that at one point, nobody wanted BenBen. 

A B.C. SPCA officer rushed the kitten into an emergency clinic in Vancouver after finding him with a crushed spine, infected wounds and deep lacertions.

It's not clear what had happened to the orange tabby, but he also had a badly damaged, cauliflower ear, was poorly fed and could barely move. 

Sandy Windover can clearly remember that day in April. She works as a veterinary technician at the Vancouver Animal Emergency and Referral Centre. She says her heart just melted when she saw him. 

"All I could think was that I had to bring him home."

BenBen was put on IV fluids and treated for his wounds. He was then transferred to the SPCA hospital, but due to his serious medical conditions and need for constant care, he wasn't an easy cat to adopt. 

When Windover learned a few days later that BenBen might be euthanized, she says she knew she had to do something. 

"They said, 'If he doesn't find a home, he might be put down,'" she said. 

So she messaged her boyfriend and they decided to adopt BenBen. 

Luckily for BenBen, Windover has the medical skills to take care of BenBen and was already the owner of two cats. She fostered him for two weeks before formally adopting him.

Several months later, BenBen's wounds have healed, although his ear remains damaged and his spine hasn't fully recovered. 

"When he runs, you kind of see him wobble like an old cat," Windover said. "Actually that's why we called him BenBen ... because he's like Benjamin Button, an old cat's walk in a young kitten's body."

Windover started an Instagram page to show BenBen's recovery. Since then, he has been dubbed by many as the "saddest cat on the internet" and amassed a large social media following. 

That led his owner to start a GoFundMe page in BenBen's name to help raise funds for other cats in need. She says the donations will go towards animal clinics in Vancouver. 

As for BenBen, the internet might call him the saddest cat, but Windover says he's quite the playful, happy kitten now.

"It's very appropriate ... his face does permanently look sad, but now it's about 'you're not playing with me' or 'let me sleep.'"

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