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Just adopted a blind cat

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone,
I am new here, I am a cat lover and have 6 cats. I help with TNR in my neighborhood and volunteer at a local free roam cat only shelter. I just adopted cat, number 6 ( and am now over my 5 cat limit ), he is blind. He is 11 months old and was blinded as a result of a severe reaction to anethesia during his nueter in september. He has been living in a cage at the vets office until I "sprung him" this past saturday. He is wonderful, very sweet and loving.

I have been scouring the net for info on blind cats and been posting on several websites, basically looking for tips and what to expect from him etc. I am slowing introducing him to my house, as it is rather large and open. He is banging into the walls...ALLOT. I think this is because he was caged so long, he is now learning how to "map" a room. He is seeing my vet on friday, for a checkup and then I am taking him to a veterinary opthamologist, for an evaluation. I wonder how profound his sight loss is.....it's seems pretty bad.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thanks for listening! I've been lurking for awhile and thought I would finally registar and join you, everyone seems so nice.

post #2 of 17
Congrats on the adoption. You must have a very special heart to open it to such a needy kitty. Thank you. I do not have any advice but I wish you all the best and welcome you to TCS!
post #3 of 17
Hi Laura-

First of all, do this cat a large favor, and confine him to only one room. NOT the whole house. If you can install a baby gate in the doorway to stop him from going forward. He needs to smell you, your cats, your house, listen the pulse of the footsteps, get adjusted to the noise. You should have all he needs in this room, two litter pans- I used cookie trays, they have no sides and so I put a rubber computer mat down in the corner for my blind kitties, filled two trays with litter and put them on the mat. You never move their position. Then you want to put food and water in another location, and never move those bowls positions either. You don't rearrange the furniture in the room. Let him get used to one room at a time. Give him at least 2 weeks in his own room before taking the baby gate out and advancing it in little distances to give him more space. He is not only blind, he is overwhelmed. One thing I learned in living with blind kitties is they are rarely attacked by the other cats. Marbles and Tags had no eye sockets (momcat had distemper) the other cats knew they were special and took great care with them-

Good luck- you can email me any time=-
post #4 of 17
Oh aren't you a very special person to do that, I don't really know anything about blind kitty's, But I know Dogs do very well not being able to see, my sister had a beautiful black cocker and he knew that whole huge back yard like the back of his paw, and the inside of the house..
But good, great wonderful luck on your new baby..
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone,
Thanks for the "welcome" posts! I really appreciate it. I've had a few cats with medical problems but this is my first "blind baby".

Thanks for your advice Hissy, it is very helpful. For now I have Cosmo in a very large dog crate in my home office, while I am at work and sleeping. When I am home I bring him in my bedroom/bathroom so he can move around and explore. I was thinking about moving him into my bedroom, as my problem with the office is I am confining a cat that doesn't get along with my other cats right now. She chases, so I have put a screen door up and in hopes that I can integrate her back into the family at some point. Cosmo is fine in his crate, he can interact with her but can also get away from her if need be. They have been fine so far.
My problem with moving him into the bedroom is: if I put litterboxes in there for him will he forvever use that room as his bathroom? I don't want litter boxes permantly in there, we have plenty in other rooms of the house. If I can "lose" the litterboxes later, I will think about moving him in there.
Right now he is getting a couple of hours in the afternoon in my bedroom (my cat sitter comes over and works with him) and serveral hours in the evening. I want him out of the crate and able to move around the house soon, but not too soon for his own good. I just feel so bad that he's had to spend so much time in a crate...
Thanks again!
post #6 of 17
Well I put Tag and Marbles in the living room, because I had to keep an eye on them, and clean their eye sockets, and I didn't want them to feel isolated or alone. I hid the litter pans under the coffee table and just made sure to keep them ultra clean. These kittens were a kick. Tag got his name because as we came into the room he would run up to our feet, tap us on the leg and so if we stood still he would climb on our shoe, and wrap his paws around our ankle not clawing, and he would "ride" across the floor on our shoe. LOL Marbles was brain damaged so sadly she passed away quickly, but Tag lived to be a year old and then succumbed. He was a joy and if a fly got in the house? He was the first cat to catch it. It was remarkable their senses are so enhanced when they can't see- I miss him- I'll see if I can find a picture of him later and put it up. He loved to sit in the dog bowl LOL
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
My entire first floor is "open" so I couldn't baby gate him in any of the rooms. But when we are home, just hubby and I, I spend the bulk of my time in the bedroom watching the tube, so that's why I thought it would be good for him. A babygate would work well at the door then the other cats can come in and out when they want. Right now I have to get up and open the door everytime someone wants a "meet and greet" with Cosmo.

I'm sorry your kitties didn't live very long Hissy, but the blind babes are amazing to watch, Cosmo is incredible. Although he is having trouble with parameters, he is very playful. He stands up on his back legs and "air boxes". I've also, in the very short time I've had him, taught him to come to me by scratching the carpet with my fingernails. he is very smart.
Thanks again for the advice...
post #8 of 17
No advice I'm afraid just a warm welcome and Cosmo sounds a sweetheart. Keep us updated.
Take care
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the warm welcome! I was hoping to be able to post more frequently but have been drowning at work lately. Not to mention my new kitty is keeping me very busy. I am slowly increasing his roaming area, now he has my bedroom, bath, hallway and spare bath. Basically the entire 2nd floor of our house, we keep the spare rooms closed off. He is doing very well.

I took him to my vet on friday, he is very healthy, the only issue he has is the blindness. I made an appointment to take him to a veterinary eye specialist on Saturday. I'll let you all know how we make out.

Have a great day and thanks again!
post #10 of 17
Hi Laura!

A warm welcome to TCS. How lovely of you to adopt a blind kitty. We would love to see pics.

post #11 of 17
Laura, what an angel in disguise you truly are. Your new kitty will "see" you in very special ways. Your thread has recalled to me that a TCS member by the name Ellen had posted here or was it on the Behavior Board, about a new blind kitty she had adopted very recently too! She hasn't updated in a week or so, let me find it for you.

ah yes, here it is!

post #12 of 17
Laura, bless you for adopting a blind kitty, I have two and soon to be 3. I've had them since they were 3 days old. They were premature kittens and their eyes didn't fully developed. Their mommy die two days after having them and the owner asked me if I wanted them. Of course I didn't know they were blind until I took them to the vet. Paco and Peluchita are 90% blind and Gordo (who is on my siggy) will be blind when he gets older.
BTW Welcome to the site.
post #13 of 17
Bless you for taking in this very special (needs) kitty! Reminds me of a rescue story on our site, whose story and the poem with it always touches my heart. You can read Lucy-Lou's story here: http://www.savesamoa.org/html/lucy-lou.html

Here's the poem:

Hello, my name is Lucy,
I’m as happy as can be:
I’m just the same as other cats,
Except that I can’t see.

I love to run and jump and play,
I have my favorite toy;
My brothers like to play with me,
My life is full of joy.

My mommies, how they love me,
They tell me every day;
How their lives have become fuller,
Since I came to stay.

They wish that I could see them,
I’ve known this from the start;
I hope that they can understand,
I see them with my heart.
Just always remember that your sweet boy may not see you with his eyes, but he sees you quite clearly with his heart.
post #14 of 17
Thanks for the reminder about Lucy Lou Heidi. She sure is a special kit.
You see Laura you are not alone, so many wonderful people have these special kits and are ever willing to share their knowledge.
I hope you both go from strength to strength.
post #15 of 17
Hi, Laura!!!
So great to hear you adopted a blind kitty too....I'm Ellen and I have what I affectionately call "The Herd"...my group of rescue kitties, one of which is the very unique Sweet Missy LaPurr!!!!
Her thread's a bit earlier in the behavior forum....
As you and I are finding out, helping out a blind kitty's an education in itself...I've had kitties since I was four and I'm at the starting point with Missy....
She was severely emotionally traumatized and abused, emaciated too...
Cosmo is gifted with people to love and appreciate him, this will help him alot.
Take Good Care and Pats to Cosmo,
Ellen and Sweet Missy and the Herd
post #16 of 17
Sillycat--all the best wishes to you and your new baby.

What a beautiful poem, too.
post #17 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi Everyone,
Just wanted to drop by and tell you all that my new boy Cosmo is doing great. We took him to a veterinary eye specialist two weeks ago and he told us a little more about Cosmo's blindness. He does seem to have a little sight, but not much. He can see some movement and possibly some shadows. He also has some motor impairment from the lack of oxygen during his surgery that caused the blindness. He is a somewhat clumsy, but getting around pretty well overall.

I have given him free roam of the house which is working out well, we put netting up on our open staircase to keep him from falling into our foyer. I *think* that was my biggest fear with him.

He is also getting along pretty well with his siblings. The only problem I am having with him is rough play, meaning he bites and scratches my husband and I alot. I don't know how much this has to do with his deficits or that he's at that *age*. I'm working with him as I would any kitten with the same problem. He has a habit of jumping in bed with us at night and biting my husband, we can put him back on the floor 10 times, but he's right back up. So I put him in our bathroom with a bed and water for about an hour till he calms down. He does this maybe 3 out of 7 nights during the week. I think he'll learn and grow out of it.

He is really sweet and cuddly, we are just crazy about him!
Take care everyone, I'll try to get back more often, just going through a busy time at work.....YUCK! LOL
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