A blind cat’s search for a furever home – Rico’s story
Finding the perfect adopter for an animal sometimes takes time, patience and a loving commitment to finding the perfect match. That’s what it took for Rico to find his human.
Rico is a white, short-haired kitty with tabby patches. He came into the care of the Markham Cat Adoption and Education Centre at eight years old, and blind.
He really wasn’t interested in playtime, but he was very food motivated and loved attention. Unfortunately, as a result, he was also overweight, so the animal care team put him on a special diet to help him feel his best.
Finding the perfect home for Rico
The animal care team knew Rico was going to need a home that was fairly quiet, without a lot of noise and confusion to frighten him. Consistency in their environment is key with blind animals. For example, not moving furniture around to confuse them.
Rico found his loving person who wasn’t daunted by his lack of vision. Rico’s adopter, Tina, says she didn’t quite know what to expect with Rico, but was pleasantly surprised with how quickly he adapted to his new home and how eager he was to explore.
“He is equal parts affectionate, silly and curious. I was not expecting such a big personality from such a quiet kitty,” she reports.
A new beginning
With patience and care, Tina continued to work with Rico on his weight, and found ways to motivate him in playtime.
“Over the past year, I’ve tried to be very patient when it comes to playtime,” Tina reports. “His favourite are those little crinkly balls. I notice he quickly gets discouraged if he can’t find a toy after swatting it away, or pounces for it and it’s not there. After lots of vocal positive reinforcement and cheering, he’s gained so much confidence. Anyone who meets him now can’t believe he’s blind! The cheering is something that’s always a part of playtime and it’s adorable.”
Playtime has overtaken food time for Rico. His weight has improved as has his energy level and agility. Tina says the changes in him are almost miraculous.
Tina says she couldn’t have found a more perfect companion. She is so grateful she had a chance to bond and care for him. “Thank you for letting him come home with me,” she says.
Finding homes for animals in need
Finding a forever home for animals in their care is one of Ontario SPCA’s many goals. Even animals with special needs deserve a safe, loving home. It may take a little longer to achieve, but with patience, care and compassion, a loving bond can be formed and a happily ever after is possible. We think Rico would agree.
To see animals awaiting their forever home, visit ontariospca.ca/adopt
Hats off to you
To all kind-hearted and hard-working people at SPCA: hats off to you. I love animals and admire the work you do.