Manitoba

Rademenes not only 'nurse cat' in Polish shelter, says former Winnipeg woman

Former Winnipegger helps share the story of 'nurse cat', Rademenes. The cat lives at a shelter in Bydgoszcz, Poland and "cuddles" animals back to health.

Karen Patrick connects with internet sensation 'nurse cat', Rademenes

Karen Patrick meets Rademenes, the 'nurse cat' in Poland. (Karen Patrick)
Rademenes, the 'nurse cat,' has risen to Internet stardom after pictures of him helping other animals were posted on a Polish shelter's page.
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      Former Winnipegger Karen Patrick found out about Rademenes from friends back home in Canada. They posted a story about the 'nurse cat' on her page and asked if the cat belonged to her. 

      Turns out, it doesn't, but she did find out Rademenes lives at the shelter just down the street from her in Bydgoszcz, Poland.

      Karen Patrick says her cat, Georgie, is her 'therapy cat. He came from the same shelter as Radamenes. (Karen Patrick)
      And they do share a connection. Patrick has adopted four animals and fostered two others from the same shelter. She also makes regular visits with her children.

      So Patrick took it upon herself to meet Rademenes and find out more about their smallest 'employee'.

      "This sounds ridiculous but he actually comes out to greet new people coming in. Which is really, really endearing."

      Patrick was told Rademenes came to the shelter in October 2014 because he had a severe respiratory infection. The original owner wanted him put down but the shelter kept him. Now Rademenes hugs and spoons dogs and cats who have just come out of surgery.

      "These animals are showing us a little bit, in our opinion, the humanity that we have lost, the compassion, the caring, the unconditional 'I will be there for you whatever, I don't know you but I'm here to support you',"
      Karen Patrick adopted Sardinka and Sweetums. Sardinka became Sweetums' guide dog. (Karen Patrick)

      Patrick credits the shelter with giving Rademenes his caring attitude. And she says there are others, like Georgie, a dwarf cat with deformed front paws. Patrick says she suffers from anxiety but Georgie has become her 'therapy cat'.

      "If I'm going into a panic attack or in the middle of a panic attack, Georgie will show up from wherever in the house. he will jump on my chest and lie down until the attack has passed."
       
      Patrick also tells the story of two dogs she brought home from the shelter. Sardinka, which means 'Sardine' took care of senior dog, Sweetums, while the pair lived in her home.

      "Sardinka did not leave her side. She helped her navigate through the house because she could barely see, her hearing was not good. And the two of them became great, great buddies. Unfortunately, Sweetums was only with us about three months. But on her final day, Sardinka laid with her, laid across her until she passed away."

      Patrick says there are countless animals like Rademenes in shelters all over the world but she felt compelled to share his story. 

      "It makes us stop and focus on perhaps what we could change in ourselves a little bit. Because if this is a kitty, imagine what we, as people, could do."

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