Woman Notices 'Oil Spot' In Parking Lot — And Ends Up Saving A Life

"[M]y heart rate jumped up as I realized that I needed to do something — but what?”

There are two Campbell’s Nursery locations in Lincoln, Nebraska, and Rose Hunter, a self-proclaimed “houseplant addict,” almost always visits the one closest to her home. But this past summer, after changing some plans on a whim, Hunter ended up near the other location, so she decided to stop by. Little did she know, this chance visit would change her life.

Arriving at Campbell’s, Hunter noticed something strange in the parking lot. There appeared to be a tiny, fuzzy lump abandoned on the concrete.

“At first I had no idea what I was looking at,” Hunter told The Dodo. “From far away … I recognized him to be another oil spot.”

lump in parking lot
Rose Hunter

Curious, Hunter went over to get a closer look. Initially, she thought the little animal was a rabbit. Then she thought he might be a squirrel. Finally, she realized the baby was a kitten, and he couldn’t have been more than 5 days old.

“It’s an absolute miracle he was dropped in the center of a parking space and not anywhere on the line or where a tire might land,” Hunter said.

kitten in parking lot
Rose Hunter

Hunter knew she had to help him.

“I felt very exhilarated,” Hunter said. “Suddenly my heart rate jumped up as I realized that I needed to do something — but what?”

Hunter gingerly grabbed the kitten and moved him to the safety of her car. Then she called Campbell’s and asked if they were aware of any stray or pregnant cats on the property. No one at the nursery had any knowledge of a pregnant cat, so Hunter called a local vet for advice and made an appointment. She took the little kitten home, where he could rest safely for the night. The next morning, Hunter returned and put the kitten in a box, hoping his mother might come back for him, but no one came. Luckily, the little guy was safe with Hunter now.

Rose Hunter

After posting on Facebook about her situation, Hunter connected with an old friend who knew of a potential foster cat mom in the area. The older cat had just given birth to kittens and was still nursing. Miraculously, the friendly mother cat was happy to feed the stray kitten, even though he wasn’t her own.

“It was remarkable to watch their first meeting and see him latch onto her for the very first time,” Hunter said.

gray kitten
Rose Hunter

The kitten enjoyed six weeks' worth of growing up with his foster mom and four foster siblings. When he was ready, he went home to Hunter, who’d always known she had to adopt him.

“There was no question about it,” Hunter said. “Honestly, within a minute after discovering him, I was like, ‘Okay, so your name is obviously going to be Campbell.’”

These days, Campbell is loving life with his mom — enjoying lots of toys, practicing his pouncing and executing surprisingly perfect somersaults as he plays.

Hunter is so happy she found her new friend, who always keeps a smile on her face.

“He’s now like a little cartoon character,” Hunter said. “Just so playful and funny and such silly and expressive facial expressions.”