Hello my friends! Welcome to my blog! This week’s tale is very special!! I am honored to have had the privilege of visiting with some very special kitties and humans in a town not far from where I live! Now that I know where these fine folks are, they won’t be able to get rid of me!!!!
It all started with the invitation Miss Alana sent to all her Facebook friends. She told us that they were having a visitor’s day at the Blind Cat Rescue and Sanctuary to celebrate their new building. I told Mom about the Blind Cat Rescue and asked if she and Dad would like to give me a ride there. She was very excited about going and promised me we would make time in our busy Saturday to find our way to St. Pauls.
The day of the open house finally arrived and I couldn’t wait to get going. Dad had to work for a little while in the morning, so I passed the time by picking out lots of hats to take with me. I stuffed Roody full of all my favorites! I wasn’t sure how many kitties I was going to meet, so I brought as many as I could cram into Roody’s pouch. Poor Roody looked like she was going to explode, but she assured me that she wasn’t uncomfortable.
When Dad finally returned home, I scampered to the car with Roody in tow. We sat and waited for slow poke Mom to get in the car. The ride seemed to take forever – I just couldn’t wait to get there. I was a little nervous though – I wasn’t sure what to expect from the blind kitties. My friend, Mimsy, was blind, but she had a forever home and had a sister to look out for her. How would this group of all blind kitties be able to get along?!?!?!?!
We turned onto the dirt road that led to the shelter. I was the first to spot it at the very end of the road. Before the car was even fully stopped I was bounding out the car door, calling out Miss Alana’s name. When my Mom caught up with me, she scooped me up and told me to calm down. She explained we needed to be quiet and calm when we entered the shelter as to not scare the residents. That made sense, so I toned it down…for now anyway.
I was the first to reach the door and I led my family inside.
The first person I saw was Miss Alana and I rushed up to her to give her a big hug. She laughed and welcomed us to the shelter and showed us around. All the time Miss Alana was talking I was peeking into the rooms to see if there were any felines around.
It was really cool - each housing area had both an inside and outside space for the residents. They had a hole cut out in the door with a flap over it for the kitties to go in and out as they pleased. There was a big fan out in each run to help keep the sunbathers cool. I know I would spend lots of time outside if I lived here! There was a wall – like a garage door – that could be pulled down when storms rolled through the area or when it got really cold. Wow! This place was great!!!
After we finished our tour, I asked Miss Alana if I could visit with some of the residents. She told me that the kitties had been looking forward to meeting me and they were anxious to show me around.
I pulled a couple of hats from Roody’s pouch and headed into one of the kitty rooms. There were pictures on the wall of each of the occupants which made it easy to get to know everyone. They heard me enter the room, and the first fine felines to welcome me were Hermes and Snicker. I let each of them select a hat and then we turned and posed for a picture.
Snicker acted as host and introduced me to the other kitties. They all moved about so sure footedly that I almost forgot they were blind! We chatted and they showed me all the nice things they had to climb on. They offered me some food and water from their bowls, which I must say was quite delicious!
The kitties were all different colors, shapes and sizes. Speaking of shapes, I felt quite scrawny when I was introduced to a…..er……um….”robust” kitty named Maggie. She had a unique shape – more barrel-like than any kitty I had ever met. Maggie was very sweet and friendly and she didn’t take it wrong when I went out to the car to bring in some fat free milk for her.
I explained to her that when I start putting on weight I switch from regular milk to fat free and it really helps. We all shared a bowl of the fat free milk and Maggie agreed it was quite tasty.
Our milk snack fueled us up for some fun. Lily and I headed out to the supply area to wrangle up so more toys. The toy bins were way up high, so Lily hoisted me up so I could grab a tub. What lucky kitties – so many toys!!
We had so much fun pulling toys out of the tub and batting them about the room. I couldn’t get over the fact that these blind kitties were able to play just like sighted cats! They knew no fear as the leapt all over the room chasing catnip mice and balls with little bells in them. At one point I was so busy chasing a leopard print mouse that I didn’t pay attention and crashed into Paul. He was very nice and told me not to worry. He was probably thinking to himself – silly sighted cat!
After we managed to bat every toy in the tub under beds or blankets or cages, it was time to think of a new game. How about a game of Marco Polo? Even though the game is usually played in a pool, the enclosed room would give the same effect as being in a pool – without the wet fur smell and awful wet cat appearance!
Casper volunteered to be “it” first. Everyone scattered and climbed up high to avoid being tagged. I was the slowest of the bunch and it took Casper no time to tag me with his paw and yell “You’re it!” Drats! These blind kitties were putting me to shame! They were certainly a lot quicker than Steve and Malcolm, my usual playmates!
We had to ask Miss Alana for a blindfold for me. I was interested to see how well I did without the benefit of my eyesight. Even with the limit of only one eye, what a difference that one eye makes. It was so weird not being able to see anything. So this is what the blind kitties felt like! I took off my hat so I could hear better. I found I would have to rely on what I heard to figure out where the rest of the gang was. I tilted my head and listened closely. I reached out my hand to keep me from walking into things.
I moved very slowly. I could hear my new friends snickering as they heard my paws shuffling on the floor. From the snickering, it sounded like they had settled themselves up on the beds and the scratchy climby thing. I called out “Marco!” and a chorus of voices replied “Polo!” They were indeed way up high. I took a deep breath and started feeling my way up the obstacle course. It really didn’t take too long to get used to not seeing and after a few minutes I managed to corner Chester and tag him – actually, I think Chester was being nice and let me catch him!
After a few rounds of me being “it” every other time, we decided it was getting late and we should check on the humans to see what they were up to. When I found Mom, she told me that visiting hours were going to be over soon and we would have to head home. My goodness! Time had just flown by!
As I was waiting for my parents to finish talking to Miss Alana, I noticed a magazine sitting on a table. It was published by Purina and there was a picture of a beautiful blind cat on the cover. Hmmmm, that cat looked familiar. I asked Lily to take off her hat…I took a close look at her markings and then at the markings of the cat on the cover. That was Lily on the cover!!!! I was very impressed. It was a beautiful photo! I asked Miss Alana if I could have a copy of the magazine and she told me I could. I asked Lily if she would autograph a copy for me and she graciously obliged.
As I stood admiring my autographed magazine, I noticed that the visitors had tracked a bunch of dirt onto the floor. A couple of us felines decided we would help out and clean up after the messy humans! Lily grabbed a broom, Casper collected some trash and I took a sponge to wipe the floor.
Miss Alana told us we did a wonderful job and she gave each one of us some treats -Friskie’s Cheezy Craze Crunch - yum, my favorite!
I went from room to room saying my goodbyes. I hated to leave my new friends, but I had to go home. I promised them I would come back and visit again very soon!
As we walked to the car I realized that I had almost forgotten that I had asked Mom to write a check from my book sales account to give as a donation to the shelter. I collected the check from Mom and presented it to Miss Alana.
She was very grateful and gave me a big ol’ hug. I told her that she was very special and that kitties everywhere sleep better knowing there are people like her in the world.
As our car pulled away, I waved at my friends out the window. Mom told me that Miss Alana had mentioned to her that they are in need of volunteers to help take care of all the precious kitties. I told Mom that I would help spread the word and see if we could drum up some help. I know if people visit the shelter they will fall in love with the special residents and want to be a part of it.
As I settled in next to Roody for a much needed cat nap, I thought about how amazing it was that the blind cats were just like any other cats. They are loving, playful, independent and very patient with silly cats who stink at playing Marco Polo!
If you would like more information about the Blind Cat Rescue and Sanctuary, just go to www.blindcatrescue.com and check out all the beautiful kitties available for sponsorship. There are also many great videos showing the playful blind kitties doing their thing! It will make you smile and feel all warm inside!
Until next week…
Love and kitty kisses,