Pet Cat Survives 40 Days Locked in Apartment After Human Family Is Hospitalized with Coronavirus

Le Le, a British Shorthair cat from Wuhan, China, has become a symbol of resistance during the current pandemic, showing us human that if she could survive by herself in a locked apartment for 40 days, then we can handle a bit of social distancing and isolation too.

This story of feline endurance and survival began in January of 2020, when the Covid-19 crisis in Wuhan was still in its infancy. One by one, Le Le’s human family had to be hospitalized after becoming infected with the coronavirus, and before the Chinese New Year (January 25) rolled up, the heavily pregnant cat had been left by herself. Her owners had decided not to hire someone look after her, or even check in on her from time to time, because they didn’t known whether their home was contaminated with the virus or not. So they just opened a bag of cat food and hoped for thee best.

“I had to find a solution myself,’ the cat’s owner told Chinese video platform Pear Video, adding that before he went to the hospital for a checkup, he built a delivery pad for Le Le, in case he didn’t come back, so she had something soft to give birth on. He also opened a 20-pound bag of cat food, left the bathroom and the balcony doors open so she could move around, then left and locked the cat inside the apartment.

“I keep turtles and flowers on the balcony, and there is filtered water there safe for her to drink,” the man added. “She also knew how to use the cat toilet in our bathroom.”

For the 40 days that Le Le’s owners were hospitalized and prevented from returning home, no one knew anything about the feline what she was up to, or if she was even alive anymore. But when they returned and saw Le Le safe and sound, with four kittens running around the flat, they were overjoyed.

“I count myself very lucky. After all, I didn’t take care of her [for so long],” the owner said. “But when I saw the newborns, it was like I saw hope.”


Le Le had reportedly lost about half of her normal weight, but her and the kittens were otherwise in perfect health. The only casualties of the ordeal were the family’s pet fish, which ended up as food for Le Le and her brood.

According to China Daily, Chen named the four kittens”Xiaowu”, “Hanhan”, “Xiaojia” and “Youyou”, which together mean “Wuhan, fighting” in Chinese.

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