"It had to be incredibly painful," Susan Bass, of Big Cat Rescue, told The Dodo, "but he's such a sweetheart, he never even let on that he was in pain."
Rescuers wondered whether euthanasia was the only way to ease his suffering. But the vets were determined to help him. Veterinarians tailored surgeries for Mickey to give him every chance possible at a happy life. The doctors used artificial ligaments to stabilize Mickey's knee and helped him learn how to walk again with physical therapy.