Alright, guys — it’s time to pull up a seat and settle in for a #WobblyWednesday with one of my dear furiends. This friend of mine is one cool cat, and she is a fellow CHer too! AND she’s Facebook famous! You are going to LOVE her! Anyway, without further adieu, I present…
Age: 5 years old
Favorite food: Any sort of treat, but most of all Purebites shrimpies, Bilanx and Dreamies/Temptations treats.
Favorite toy/activity: I LOVE to play! My favorites are my turbo chaser ball track, catnip toys and string toys. Outside of that, I just loves to snuggle!
Special feature: Mild Cerebellar Hypoplasia (CH)
I was born with mild cerebellar hypoplasia (CH), which is an underdevelopment of the cerebellum that results in wobbliness. I also have vision troubles. When I was little, my humans took me to get spayed, and then they declawed me too! It was awful 🙁 I don’t know what happened, but somehow I ended up wandering the streets in Wyandotte, MI, in the summer of 2014. I was alone and scared. By some miracle, I was found and taken to the Wyandotte Animal Control (WAC). I could barely walk and my vision was so bad that they thought I was blind, too. Regardless of my physical issues, WAC tried to find my humans, but they never came looking for me. The nice volunteers posted me on Facebook as being up for adoption in late August of 2014, to try to find me a new home. Meanwhile, one of the nice volunteers, Tina, spent as much time as she could with me, trying to make me feel safe and loved. I didn’t know if I’d ever have another forever home… Or if I even believed in the possibility of a forever home, anymore…
On August 26th, 2 days after her birthday, my Mama saw my photo on Facebook, looking for a new home. Usually, Mama just cross-posts to try to help kitties, but not this time… Mama and Dad already had one kitty, Care Bear, who has been with them for the last 11 years. Mom is highly allergic to kitties and she said she’d never have more than one. Never, that is, until she saw my picture 🙂 Mom traded many emails with Alyssa, the nice lady who runs the shelter. She needed to know if I could manage stairs, because our house has 2 flights of them. Friday the 29th, Alyssa took me to her house and found that I could manage stairs, so she let Mom know and she practically ran out the door to drive from Cleveland, OH to Wyandotte to bring me home. As soon as Mam got to the shelter, she scooped me up in her arms and promised me forever. I didn’t believe her, but she held me and talked to me and I felt safe and warm. During the ride home, she rubbed my head and talked to me softly.
It’s been one big adventure since then. At first, I couldn’t jump onto anything. My coordination was awful and so was my vision. After awhile, though, my wobble was greatly reduced and I was able to jump up on the low futon in my sanctuary room. After a few months, I was able to get up on the couches and chairs and after 4 months, I shocked the heck out of Mom and took a flying leap onto the guest room bed, which is up on a frame. I’ll always have a “wobble,” but it’s much better now. I am SO healthy now, and went from 6 to 11lbs. I’m very small, but very solid, now! The vet says I’m about 5 years old, but Mama thinks I look like a kitten. For a long time, I didn’t trust that my new home and family wouldn’t disappear if I closed my eyes, so I would keep my eyes open when Mom snuggled me and refused to sleep. After a few months, though, I started to realize that my new humans love me dearly and that they aren’t going anywhere. Mom was all excited the day I finally fell asleep in her arms. Sister and I still don’t get along, but Mom and Dad are working hard to help us work out our issues. I’m a lucky girl and my mom says that she’s even luckier than I am, because I filled a spot in her soul that she didn’t know was empty until I filled it up! <3
What an amazing story! I love that your mom just couldn’t resist you. We CH kitties have a certain charm, don’t we? 😉 I also love how you’ve accomplished so many things, despite your wobbliness! They say that CH kitties don’t “get better,” but we are extremely adaptable, not to mention highly determined! There really isn’t anything we can’t do, is there?! One way or another, we will find a way! Anyway, can you tell us a little bit more about where you fall on the CH scale?
At first, mama thought I was moderate, because I couldn’t walk well and couldn’t jump at all, but after several months of good food and working with me, she realized I’m very mild! You can only see my wobbles when I’m really excited or scared, mostly. Sometimes you can also tell when I’m up on something off the ground, because I lose my balance so easily. I can walk fine and I can jump onto lower stuff… The highest I’ve ever gone was jumping onto the bed in the guest room that’s still on its frame. Mama and Dad took their bed off the frame for me. Mama was dancing around like a crazy woman, all excited when I got up there. I sure do miss my claws though. They would really help when I misjudge or lose my balance. 🙁
Are there any ways that you need extra assistance, maybe with eating or using the litter box?
Nope, I’m very lucky!
Have you ever accidentally hurt yourself because of your CH?
Oh yes… One time going down the stairs, I lost my balance and fell down the stairs. Mama was crying and shaking like a little girl. I was okay, thankfully, since there is a big fuzzy rug at the bottom, but I was a little ginger with my front leg for a day or so. More than anything, I’ve hurt my pride a lot, which isn’t so bad since my humans never laugh at me when I fall.
I know what you mean about hurt pride. But as many times as we get our pride hurt, it gets built back ten-fold when we accomplish something pawesome, like jumping up on the bed! For some reason the other kitties in my home don’t get as excited as I do about jumping up on the bed. I don’t understand why not or see how we’re any different from each other. Do you seem to know that you are “different,” or are you ever emotionally affected by your condition, Grace?
I’m different because after my experiences, I really appreciate my humans and I spend extra time being with them, snuggling, purring and being affectionate. I want them to know how much I love them and am grateful for being with them. My sister is more standoffish. I’m just happy all the time!
Happy is the purrfect way to be! My mom says I’m the happiest kitty she’s every known too. Tell us more about your personality – what else makes you special?
Well, one thing, and this isn’t personality, but I have eyebrows. MOL Mama says they make me look worried or concerned most of the time, when really I’m just happy! There are other little things that Mama says make me special too… Like how I love to have my eyes rubbed. Or how much I love treats… So much so that I’ve tried to take off a finger or two on accident. I make a really adorable little trill/meow/purr noise when someone touches me and I’m not expecting it, or when I hear Mama coming upstairs when she gets home.
You sound like so much fun, Grace, and so sweet. We have a lot in common too! Anyway, I guess it’s about time to wrap things up. Do you have any words of wisdom you would like to pass on to anyone who is considering adopting a cat with CH?
Don’t pass us CH kitties by because we are different! We make up for any extra assistance we might need by giving lots of love and affection to our humans. We live just as long as other kitties and our CH doesn’t get worse. We are extra special grateful to our humans for any big or little sacrifices they make for us and we return their love 10 times over.
You are exactly right, Grace! Anything else that you would like to add?
I want to tell people that different is beautiful. All kitties, regardless of handicap are worthy of love, respect and a safe furever home. Please, adopt a special-needs kitty or an FELV/FIV+ kitty and give them the love they so desperately crave and deserve.
Thank you so much for the interview, Miss Sophie. It was wonderful to meet you and I feel so blessed to have been included in your interview series!!!! OH, and please check out mine and sister Care Bear’s Facebook page! We try to help animals in need through cross-posting and doing fundraisers for animals in need.