Woman who rescued kitten on busy road surprised to learn it is not a kitten at all

A Tennessee woman who believed she was rescuing a lost kitten was surprised when she found out the creature was actually a baby bobcat.

The ordeal began on Sept. 20, when Jill Hicks, who was driving to dinner that evening, spotted what she believed to be a small bunny running through a yard toward a busy road. As she got closer to the animal, Hicks says, she realized it was actually a "kitten" and pulled her vehicle over to save it from oncoming traffic.

"Surprisingly it didn’t run from me," she wrote on Facebook. "I put it in the car with me and it climbed all over me like a kitten would do, got in the floorboard under my feet, and after stopping a couple of times to get it nestled into my lap, I finally got home with it."

Hicks, who owns a dog and a cat, set up a nice space for the rescue pet in her garage, complete with a litter box, cat food, water and a "cozy" box that included a soft sweater.

The animal lover even shared an image of the creature, which she initially called a bobtail cat, on Facebook in an attempt to find it a loving home.

However, after consulting with a neighbor who had asked to see the kitten, Hicks began to realize the cuddly critter was actually a juvenile bobcat.

"Thank the lord for her because I sure was about to put that baby in the sink and give it a bath and put it in bed with me!" Hicks joked on Facebook.

She then took the bobcat to For Fox Sake Wildlife Rescue, a nonprofit in Chattanooga, Tenn., where volunteers named the feline Arwen and discovered she was about 5 weeks old.

17 PHOTOS
Hollywood icons with their pets
See Gallery
Hollywood icons with their pets
Elizbeth Taylor in 1953, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Marilyn Monroe in 1961, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Judy Garland in 1938, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Frank Sinatra in 1957, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Joan Collins in 1957, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Anne Francis in 1956, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Rock Hudson in 1965, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Heather Angel in 1934, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Lauren Bacall in 1944, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Diana Dors in 1958, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Mary Martin in 1941, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn in 1945, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Josephine Baker in 1931, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Keenan Wynn, Janet Leigh and Tony Cutris in 1952, as seen in "Hollywood Cats"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Carole Lombard in 1939, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

William Powell and Myrna Loy in 1939, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

Fred MacMurray in 1959, as seen in "Hollywood Dogs"

(Credit: ACC Art Books)

HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

"The lady said it's odd for them to be this young this time of year, she thinks maybe the mom had a liter and lost it and then had this baby," Hicks noted. "It made me sad to think that she lost a litter and now I took this one from her and she spent all night searching for her baby but I had no idea it was a bobcat. I thought it was a kitten and just wanted to keep it from getting hit by a car or eaten by coyotes."

Thankfully, Hicks says, Arwen is in good hands at For Fox Sake — she has been eating formula regularly and has already gained a couple of ounces.

The bobcat will remain under the care of the shelter until she has matured enough to be released into the wild to join a large colony of bobcats in a nearby area where hunting is not permitted.

"I feel in my heart she will live happily ever after!" Hicks said.

If you wish to donate toward Arwen's rehabilitation, as well as the other bobcats, skunks, foxes and raccoons at For Fox Sake, here is their Amazon wishlist.

17 PHOTOS
Baby animals
See Gallery
Baby animals
(Photo Credit: Corbis)
(Photo Credit: Corbis)
Two weeks old baby tiger 'Schuna' is pictured on September 5, 2010 at the zoo in Wuppertal, western Germany. As 'Schuna' was not accepted by its mother 'Mymosa', the animal is bottle-fed and brought up by keepers. (Photo credit: HORST OSSINGER/AFP/Getty Images)
Giraffe mother 'Jujis' (L) looks after her giraffe baby 'Thabo' in their enclosure at the zoo of Hanover, northern Germany on August 12, 2011. The 1.90 metre tall and 80 kilogramme heavy Rothschild giraffe baby will be fed by his mother for th next15 months. The Rothschild giraffe is among the most endangered giraffe subspecies with only a few hundred members in the wild.  (Photo credit: HOLGER HOLLEMANN/AFP/Getty Images)
NARA, JAPAN - MAY 11:  A newly born deerlet is seen at Rokuen, a deer shelter on May 11, 2014 in Nara, Japan. (Photo by The Asahi Shimbun via Getty Images)
(Photo credit: Getty Images)
TOKYO - JUNE 24: A baby Fennec is seen at Sunshine International Aquarium on June 24, 2009 in Tokyo, Japan. The small nocturnal fox babies were born on May 17 and opened to the public from June 20 attracting many visitors to the Aquarium. (Photo by Junko Kimura/Getty Images)
XI AN, CHINA - SEPTEMBER 02:  A newborn female giant panda is seen at Shaanxi Province Rare Wildlife Rescue and Breeding Research Center on September 2, 2013 in Xi An, China. 8-year-old giant panda Xin Xin gave birth to the baby on July 18 after being artificially inseminated. (Photo by F.Kingi/ChinaFotoPress via Getty Images)
GREAT BRITAIN - APRIL 17: Lambs in the Cotswolds, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom, UK. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
(Photo credit: Shutterstock/Natalia Melnychuk)
(Photo credit: Shutterstock)
FUKUOKA, JAPAN - NOVEMBER 05: Newly born Asian short-clawed otters are seen at the Fukuoka Municipal Zoo on November 5, 2013 in Fukuoka, Japan. The otters were born on August 5. (Photo by The Asahi Shimbun via Getty Images)
A five-month-old still nameless bear explores its enclosure with its mother Huanca on February 12, 2014 at the zoo in Duisburg. (Photo credit: ROLAND WEIHRAUCH/AFP/Getty Images)
(photo credit: Maureen P. Sullivan)
A one-month-old jaguar cub looks out from a bucket at the Leningradsky Zoo in Saint Petersburg on April 15, 2015. (Photo credit:  OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images)
Nine day old baby chimpanzee Deyo sits on the back of it's mother Lady at the 'ZOOM' Zoo in Gelsenkirchen, western Germany, on March 19, 2015. (Photo credit: ROLAND WEIHRAUCH/AFP/Getty Images)
This photo taken on December 28, 2014 shows a red-faced macaque baby monkey playing in its box at a zoo in Hangzhou, in eastern China's Hangzhou province. The baby monkey, born some two months ago, quickly became popular for its restless movements that resembled a gymnast, local media reported.  (Photo credit: STR/AFP/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Read Full Story

Sign up for the Best Bites by AOL newsletter to get the most delicious recipes and hottest food trends delivered straight to your inbox every day.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.