When our Adoptions Manager Arlinda first met Stevie, she wasn’t even planning on adopting. She was working and was looking through our list of animals that would be available for adoption that day when she saw his picture. He was missing both eyes, which caught her attention, so she decided to go meet him out of curiosity. Right away she fell in love with his sweet, cuddly personality and his clear confidence despite being blind.
Arlinda had no idea that just a few weeks earlier, Stevie was a completely different kitten.
Stevie and his siblings Shuma, Daredevil, and Iris came to us as five week old kittens. All were sick with upper respiratory infections and had various degrees of eye issues, but Stevie was in the worst shape. Both of his corneas had ruptured, and our Medical team determined that he would need to have his eyes removed once he was feeling better.
The kittens were sent to an experienced foster home with Katie, who has fostered 96 kittens since she first started fostering with HSSV in 2017. She provided the kittens with eye drops and antibiotics and stayed in close contact with our Medical team to keep them up to date on their conditions. The kittens came to our medical center for frequent checkups, and the team decided that three of the four kittens would need surgeries for their eyes.
After surgery, both Shuma and Daredevil healed well. They each had one eye removed, and just needed a few days of medication and supervision as they healed. Stevie, on the other hand, was a challenge. His eyes had been much worse and the surgery more intensive, so he needed more care and time to heal. Katie knew he didn’t like having a cone on, so she started bringing him to work with her at a high school wellness center where she could supervise him and he could have some time cone-free. He loved visiting the students at Katie’s work, and would cuddle up with them whenever possible.
Stevie visiting students at the wellness center
At home, she was thrilled to see that he was adapting especially well to life without vision. Just two days after surgery, Stevie was feeling confident enough to chase his siblings around at high speeds, find the litter box and food on his own, and get off and on furniture all by himself. “It was almost like the loss of vision made him braver,” says Katie.
When it came time for Stevie and his siblings to return to HSSV to find their forever homes, Katie had a hard time saying goodbye to him. She had fostered many times before, but he was special.
Arlinda, just like Katie, saw how special Stevie was right away. He was so calm, friendly, and adaptable, that she decided not only to adopt him, but to bring him to work with her so he could serve as her office kitty. When Katie heard about Stevie’s new role, she was thrilled for him. “This just made me soooo happy, as I think he’s perfect for that!”
Stevie is now settling in to Arlinda’s home and is doing amazing. He’s figured out the layout of her house and is slowly being introduced to his new cat siblings, Macaroni and Cheese. At work, he loves to spend his time napping in Arlinda’s lap during meetings, greeting visitors, and making surprise appearances in Zoom calls. He’s even getting a name change soon to match his new siblings’ names (we’re rooting for Pesto!).
We’re so grateful that we were able to provide Stevie and his siblings with the Medical treatments they needed, and that they were given the absolute best care with an amazing foster before finding their forever homes. To help us continue to save and support animals like Stevie, make a gift today. And if you haven’t already, sign up for our eNewsletter to get stories like this delivered straight to your inbox!