ROSEBURG, Ore. - A newborn kitten recently entered the world with two faces and, hopefully, at least nine lives.
Gemini was born Sunday with two mouths, two tongues, two noses and four eyes.
"I kind of feel sorry for her, because I can't know for a fact if she's going to live or die," its owner, Lee Bluetear of Glide, told the (Roseburg) News-Review. "If she makes it, she should be a perfectly normal and healthy cat. Other than having two faces."
Roseburg veterinarian Alan Ross, who examined the kitten on Tuesday, said he can't estimate the kitten's life span. He said when he first saw the kitten, he wouldn't have given her more than a 10 percent chance of survival.
"With the three of our veterinarians here, we have a combined total of 50 years of experience," Ross said. "We have never seen anything like this."
Bluetear, 40, said Gemini is much stronger and drinking more milk than in its first few days. Ross said that if the kitten does survive, it might need surgery to remove the extra tissue in between its two mouths.
Bluetear has been breeding different kinds of animals, starting with dogs, since 1980. Roughly three years ago, she discovered a litter of smaller than normal kittens she calls "miniature cats."
She now has plans to market the miniature cats, which grow to about 4 pounds, on the Internet.
Gemini was born to a miniature mother and a full-size father.
"Everybody is totally amazed that this thing exists," Bluetear said.
(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)