Bright Eyes had major surgery when a bladder stone almost killed her. She was pulled from a colony and now lives in a room-size condo. As a kitten, she and some of her litter mates had cute little white tufts behind their ears. An attempt was made to socialize them, but they ended up being returned to the colony until she was pulled because she lost so much weight it became obvious something was wrong.
She also seems to have a hearing impairment, as did others in her litter. She’s very gentle–just extremely shy. Her shyness made her a target of bullying by other cats.
As an indoor cat, Bright Eyes also marks territory when loose. That may be a habit from being in pain and having infections repeatedly for a long time before she had surgery, or it could be fear. A special diet, habitual marking, along with hygiene clips (she’s overweight, and believe me we’ve tried numerous solutions), and daily cleaning of her bottom to prevent infection, pretty much eliminates adoption into an indoor-only home. We do not adopt to any home that is not committed to indoor-only living for the kitties.
She also can’t be in a colony where she doesn’t receive medical care and has to live outside, due to her hearing impairment and inability to move quickly. Therefore, she lives in a 6×8 indoor condo. She has supervised freedom during the daytime hours. When she has to be unsupervised, she can visit other cats through the screen and watch bird videos on tv. Of course, she receives an appropriate diet and medical care daily.
Her room contains a chair, shelves, a cat tree, litter, a drinking fountain, and toys. It also has a lovely mural with deer, trees, and birds. As you can see in the picture, one corner is near a window to look outside too. This condo room allows her to see, hear, and interact safely with the other kitties, even though it doesn’t look as pretty as it would with solid walls. Walls that isolate her, would not be healthy or help her progress.
This kitty is considered scaral. Yes, it’s a combination of scared and feral. Some feral cats, regardless of age, never adapt to people and indoor living. The fear and inability to build trust with people results in various strange combinations of behavior. She hides and goes to ground, not moving when people are near. She gets up and plays and eats when no one is around and at night when she feels safe because there’s a long time that people don’t come into her room. We do all we can to keep her safe and comfortable.
We see signs of progress, but not enough to consider adoption for her. She will come out and play with a feather on a wand when the other cats are playing too. She respects her living area by not spraying even when she’s stressed. She hisses when people reach out to touch her, but she allows touching and vet care. That’s a lot of good progress for this pretty girl.