by Vicky Giannangelo
Quirky was not an ordinary blind kitten…he had a brain and spinal injury that made him blind when he was a baby kitten. We don’t know how it happened, it could have been at birth, or from a trauma before he was 5 weeks old. We were told by a vet not to adopt him and that he should be put to sleep. We were already in love with this kitten, and we took our chances. This injury or tumor made his head shake as a kitten, and even though he outgrew it, other symptoms became apparent over his short life. As he approached second year, we noticed he never held his tail high like other kitties did, and he walked with his back half downward. His tail was always pointed downward as well. He would not jump up onto anything, so if he couldn’t climb up somehow, he could not get up onto anything.
As his two year birthday approached, he became increasingly fearful of his world. Before this time, we could always pick him up and cradle him in our arms, belly up, and calm him immediately. This ceased to work. We would find him in the middle of a room ‘looking’ up and screaming in terror. When we picked him up he would growl and shake. As this happened more frequently, he just died one morning.
His legacy for everyone is to have you know how loving and trusting blind kitties are. They see nothing to be afraid of so they have no fear. Quirky was a fearless little kitten. When I picked him up at the shelter he went limp in my arms and fell asleep. He knew he was safe. He was also more loving than one would think a cat could be. He would snuggle in my arms at night curled up between my arms and knees with his head on my arm as I lay on my side. With my other hand, I rubbed his ears while he purred us to sleep. He would lay there all night. When he or I would wake up I would stretch out one of his little arms and rub it all the way up to his toes. I rubbed each one of his toes as he stretched them out. We would do this every night. I don’t think that an ordinary cat would have stood for this kind of cuddling. He would just absorb all the love you could give him and radiate it right back. I think this is one of the most amazing qualities of a blind kitty.
Quirky would have wanted you to tell the world how amazing blind kitties can be, and he would have wanted all blind kitties to be adopted and not discarded, put to sleep, or left at shelters. If you want the experience of a lifetime, please consider adopting a blind kitty. If you cannot adopt one, spread the word. Each one of us can help them get adopted.
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