Friday, July 13, 2012

Gretchen - a special kitty with special needs

This sweet kitty has a slight wobble due to less than perfect sight and hearing. She doesn't let it slow her down and she is an absolute joy - a favorite of the staff and volunteers at Wayside Waifs. Read all about her and spread the word so we can find this special young lady the home of her dreams. She deserves it. 

Hi there!!! My name is Gretchen, and I am a very, very, very special cat!!! Some people say I am a "special needs" cat. But you know what? I think that I am a "special gives" cat--because I am going to give whoever takes me home so many wonderful blessings!!!

The most important thing of all to know about me is that I am a very, very, very happy little girl!!! Yep, that's me. I may have an extra challenge here and there, but I sure don't let that get me down. No way!!! I am a brave, outgoing, playful, curious, super-loving young kitty. I live life to the absolute fullest and enjoy every single second of it! And I'd love to share my life and my joy with you!!!

I was found all alone on the streets of Belton, and was so happy to be rescued by the nice police officer who brought me here to Wayside. When I got here, I walked right out of the carrier to meet everybody, gave a little head butt to the first person I saw, and started to eat up all the affection I could get. And believe me, I get a LOT of affection and attention around here. Just the way I like it!!!

Everyone at Wayside has fallen head over heels in love with me! Am I lucky or what??? They even sent me to some special veterinarians to find out why I am "differently-abled." You see, I'm a little unsteady on my feet and my head goes a little catty-wampus sometimes. The special vets did lots of testing. They found that my hearing and eyesight are very limited, and my special way of walking and moving may just be my way of compensating for that.

But that doesn't stop me one bit!!! No, Sir!!! Cats like me live normal lifespans. We are not in pain. It is not contagious. And we are just as intelligent and loving as any other cat. (In fact, it turns out that I myself am particularly smart.) We simply learn to compensate for our different abilities. I sure have!!!

One of the very experienced cat ladies here at Wayside recently took me home to live with her for awhile so she could see just what my special needs might be in my new forever home. Boy, is she a super-nice lady, and she'd be really glad to talk to you about me if you want more information.

Here's some of what my foster mommy found out:

First of all, I am an Oriental Shorthair mix, and I've definitely got that distinctive Oriental Shorthair purr-sonality. We Oriental Shorthairs are natural entertainers, full of enthusiasm and energy. We (rightly) believe that the world should revolve around us. We are extremely loyal, very curious, and want to be involved in all your activities.

Our feelings are easily hurt if you ignore us, but if you give us the attention we need, we will repay you with a lifetime of love, affection, and intelligent conversation. We have an opinion about every subject and are more than willing to share it with you.

Like any Oriental Shorthair, I will need an adopter who is okay with me wanting so much attention and being so vocal about it! I can be pretty loud for a few minutes when you leave me alone or put away my favorite toys. And I'm awfully demanding about wanting your full and undivided attention when you are at home. I sure hope you won't mind that. After being alone on the streets, I just crave time with my humans!!!

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm fine playing by myself, like when you are at work, but when you are home, I will expect to be the center of your universe. Don't worry. We can do lots and lots of fun things together!!! How about a good game with a cat wand toy? Those are my absolute favorite. I will play and play and play that game, and even cry for more when you finally put it away until next time! If you've got some chores to do, I would love to follow you around and supervise. And when you get tired, we can sit down on the couch, snuggle together and watch some TV until bedtime.

As you can see in my video, I am very active and playful and I compensate awfully well for my condition. I understand my limitations as far as jumping up onto things. I go slowly, and don't take too big of jumps. When you are sitting on the floor, I like to crawl up onto your shoulder and then jump off for practice.

I do just fine on carpeted stairs. In order to maintain my balance and agility, I do need to keep my weight down and also cannot be declawed or have my nails clipped too short. I need them to help me balance.

I use my litter box without fail, though I do need a nice big one to move around in. I eat really, really fast, which isn't always good for me, but you can help me slow down by giving me smaller, more frequent meals.

I would do best in a house without very young children who might not understand my special needs. But I would be great at helping older, respectful children learn about those who are differently-abled.

And it would be best if I was the only pet in the house. I do like other animals. In fact, being such an outgoing girl, I kind of like to boss them around! But I will do better in a household where I am the only pet. Besides, if you have a girl with as much love and personality as I have, you won't need any other pets to make your life happy. I can do that all by myself!

I am very, very affectionate and loving. I absolutely love to be petted! And while I'm often too busy to take time out to be held, when things quiet down at the end of a busy day, I enjoy having a nice, safe, warm lap to cuddle up in. Getting and giving love and attention are my very favorite things in life.

But out of all of this, do you know the best thing my foster mom said about me? That I am an AWESOME CAT! Aww, I love you, too, Foster Mommy!!!

So there you have it! A loving, happy, "special gives" kitty looking for a very special home. If you think it might be yours, please come down to Wayside and see me. I'll be the one soaking up the love and attention of all the staff and volunteers. They're going to miss me when I leave, but they are going to be thrilled that I found a loving forever home with a person like you!

All my love,


Thanks to Cathy Sherman for her beautiful photos of the cats at Wayside.