In January Katie Buckman visited her local cat shelter to select two kittens to rehome. While she was at the shelter she heard a loud meowing coming from one of the shelter’s kennels and went to investigate.
She found a young cat urging her to pick him up. The cat was blind, clearly distressed and very hungry.
Despite the cat’s obvious disability Buckman knew she couldn’t leave him at the shelter: the future of sheltered cats and dogs with health problems is famously bleak.
After her visit to a vet with all three kittens, Buckman from Sanford, North Carolina, US took the blind kitten home and nursed him. She kept him warm and fed him, and the love she showed the kitten worked wonders
‘The next day, he was a different boy,’ Buckman told LoveMeow. ‘He started playing with some toys, licking my face… He flourished into a playful, affectionate and silly kitten,’ Katie said.
According to the vet, the kitten was suffering with microphthalmia, a growth defect affecting some kittens that is caused either by a genetic mutation, a maternal disease affecting kittens in utero or the administration of certain medications to pregnant queen cats
Buckman eventually contacted The Odd Cat Sanctuary to arrange ongoing care for her blind kitten. The Sanctuary is a non-profit-making animal shelter specialising in care for cats with, ‘medical illnesses, behavioral issues’ and those that are, ‘physically challenged, abandoned, abused, or neglected, feral or semi-feral, death row inmates, or seniors.’
Tara Kay of the Sanctuary gladly accepted the kitten and called him Melvin.