Sometimes it takes a large disaster to bring communities together. Other times it’s a festival or celebration.
The City of Attleboro is working together for a different cause—helping a little cat named Big Al.
Big Al, also known as Alastor, is a cat suffering from enucleation in his right eye and blindness in the other. His blind eye requires surgery to be removed. A fundraiser for his surgery will be held on April 22 at 272 County Street in Attleboro from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. The fundraiser is hosted by AJ’s Furry Friends mobile grooming service and the cat rescue group, The Massachusetts Feline Intervention Alliance. (M.A.F.I.A). The grooming service is offering nail clippings and ear cleanings for dogs and cats alike. All proceeds will go towards Big Al’s surgery.
Organizing the event is Bethany Rosa, who found Big Al sitting on her South Attleboro doorstep in March of this year.
“I found him crying on my doorstep and I knew something was wrong with him,” Rosa said. “I couldn’t approach him and I couldn’t find anyone in Attleboro to help.”
Rosa then met with the M.A.F.I.A, who took care of Big Al and brought him to a veterinarian. After receiving a diagnosis and $4,000 price tag for the surgery, Rosa decided to share Big Al’s story and see if people would help raise money. To her shock, she found many people, including the city’s elected officials, had feelings for this feline.
“There are a lot of animal lovers in the community,’ she said. “I even went to Mayor Cathleen De Simone and the City Council and they are 100 percent on board with helping Big Al.”
Rosa and the M.A.F.I.A created a Facebook donation page for Big Al. As of April 21, they raised $2,210 from 64 donors, including cat specialist Dr. Rachel Geller. Additionally, the County Square Pharmacy said it would donate medication after Big Al’s surgery.
At the fundraiser, Thompson Realty Group will have breakfast and a tent in the morning. Dr. Geller is donating any proceeds of her book sales to Big Al’s Surgery cost.
Rosa said she formed a bond with Big Al, calling him the best cat in the world.
“After the surgery and recovery, we are going to put him up for adoption,” Rosa said. “He looks feral, but he’s the sweetest lovebug and is going to have the best life in the world.”
All donations can be made on this Facebook page: