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Cat rescued from LIE on the mend in Medford

Suzanne Coopersmith holds Lie-la, the cat she helped

Suzanne Coopersmith holds Lie-la, the cat she helped rescue from the Long Island Expressway, at her home in Medford on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015. Coopersmith was driving to work on Aug. 24 when she spotted the young female kitty curled up against the concrete divider on the LIE in Holtsville. Credit: Daniel Goodrich

She's home. She's alert. She's full of spunk.

The black-and-white cat rescued last week on the Long Island Expressway is also sporting a blue neck cone following elbow surgery and is to spend most of the coming weeks confined to her crate -- doctor's orders, said Suzanne Coopersmith of Medford.

It was Coopersmith who, on her way to work Aug. 24, spotted and rescued the young cat, curled up against the concrete divider in Holtsville, with a hand from Suffolk County Deputy Sheriff James Evans.

That led to a flurry of support on the sheriff's office's Facebook page, as well as kindness from neighbors and generosity from local veterinarians who waived or cut way back on fees.

The cat, now called Lie-la -- with a nod to the expressway -- underwent surgery Monday for the broken elbow, said Jason Berg, veterinarian and part-owner of Atlantic Coast Veterinary Specialists in Bohemia.

Post-surgery X-rays "look great" and she's doing "very, very well," said Berg, who, given the circumstances, waived the surgery fees. Coopersmith is "a Good Samaritan," he said. "I always love that -- big hearts."

Lie-la has been eating well and is putting up with -- though not happily -- receiving medication via syringe, Coopersmith said.

It's sad for the cat to have to be crated so long, but that's to keep her from cavorting around and reinjuring that elbow, she said. Still, Coopersmith -- already guardian of an American bulldog, another cat, an African parrot, two horses and a turkey -- has a green light to hold the rescued creature on her lap -- no jumping allowed.

After the kitty's rescue -- and a flea bath on Coopersmith's porch -- the feline was treated at Family Pet Clinic in Patchogue.

"There's no reason to think she won't make a good recovery," said Tara Troyan, veterinarian and owner, who's also giving a break on the fee.

Asked whether she had ever rescued animals in distress before, Coopersmith said, "I'm a little bit notorious," citing a little stray dachshund mix she found a couple of months ago, now residing with one of her neighbors.

Coopersmith, who works as a senior data analyst, said that in Lie-la's instance, "all the conditions were right," ranging from the sheriff's deputy's well-timed arrival, to her neighbor being home to help, to the veterinarians' generosity.

"I did the right thing," she said.

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