Raising awareness for cerebellar hypoplasia has been something I’ve been passionate about since we first adopted Sophie five years ago. Unfortunately, there are people out there who don’t think CH cats can have any quality of life and should therefore be euthanized. To make matters worse, some of these people are even veterinarians or other animal-care professionals. In most cases, this way of thinking stems from a lack of education regarding CH.
Living with a CH cat myself, I see first-hand every day what an amazing and happy life Sophie leads. Out of our seven cats, Sophie is hands down the happiest and most carefree. I’m not saying that our other cats aren’t happy too (because they are), but Sophie just has this air of pure joy and wonder and love all the time. Sure, she stumbles and falls and can’t jump the same way our other cats can, but she certainly doesn’t care.
And Sophie is just one example of how a cat with cerebellar hypoplasia can live a full and happy life. I know hundreds, even thousands more. (Seriously. The Cerebellar Hypoplasia Cats & Kittens group on Facebook has over 12,000 members.)
Sadly though, not everyone gets to witness or experience the happiness and joy of a CH cat. And as result, when they see a cat that can’t walk right (or maybe not even at all), they jump to conclusions and think the cat is in pain or that the cat can’t possibly be happy or healthy.
Just last week, we heard a heartbreaking story of a CH kitty named Amelia who was euthanized due to lack of education as well as a lack of desire to learn. Amelia lived with her foster mom and was finally adopted early last week. Her new family seemed perfect on paper – the woman was even a vet tech! However, two days after she was adopted, she was euthanized. There have since been conflicting stories flying around in the Facebook group regarding the details of the situation. We may never know exactly what happened, but regardless of the exact details, it still comes down to the fact that the woman who adopted Amelia and the vet she worked with decided that, for whatever reason, Amelia had no quality of life, so they euthanized her.
Never mind the adoption contract that stated that Amelia should be returned if her adopter couldn’t or wouldn’t care for her anymore. Never mind the fact that Amelia’s foster mom fought to get her back. Never mind the fact that tons and tons of people from the CH Facebook group called, emailed, and FB messaged the vet’s office to try to educate them and convince them that Amelia didn’t deserve to be killed. None of it was enough.
In the wake of such a heartbreaking tragedy, the only thing I know to do is continue to educate and raise awareness. I really believe that education is the key to saving lives, so I will be doubling our “Cerebellar Hypoplasia Awareness” efforts!
Some of the upcoming things you can expect to see from us:
- A new #WobblyWednesday series on our Facebook page. Each week, we will be sharing a photo of an animal with CH (yes, dogs can have it too!) along with a little blurb about how he or she lives a happy life and positively impacts the lives of his or her family.
- More videos of Sophie!
- A Facebook Live video about cerebellar hypoplasia.
- We will also be working with a couple of other bloggers on guest posts and other collaborative projects relating to CH.
What you can do to help, if you’re so inclined:
- SHARE our CH social media posts to help us spread the love and raise awareness
- SHARE any and all of our CH blog posts. You can find links to many of most popular CH posts here.
- Purchase your very own Wobble Nation t-shirt! Links to purchase can be found here.
- Follow the #WobblyWednesday hashtag on Instagram for your weekly dose of wobbly cuteness!
To our other blogger friends – if you are interested in collaborating in some way on a post or campaign relating to cerebellar hypoplasia awareness, please contact me at kittycatchronicles (at) gmail.com or on Facebook.