NEWS AND COMMENT-PHILADELPHIA, USA: This is a cat-human relationship with a difference. It’s a special one born out of a slightly difficult start in life but there is a very good ending. And the middle bit is pretty nice too.
Caitlin’s daughter, Ivy, is now almost 18 months old. She was born with a cleft lip and palate. When Caitlin learned about it during her pregnancy, she was must have been very concerned. She said that “it was a scary and alienating situation to find ourselves in”. But her concerns faded as she learnt about how the problem can be fixed and I guess how Ivy will live an entirely normal life. As it happens, she’s become a bit of a star.
Ivy has always loved everything to do with cats. Her mother says that she made meowing noises at any cat that she saw, real or otherwise. This encouraged Caitlin and spouse to consider adopting a kitten for Ivy and as a companion for their resident cat.
At the time there were undecided but one of the best friends of Caitlin and her husband shared a post on the Instagram website showing Sergeant Pepper, a kitten born with a cleft lip and palate. At the time, the kitten was being fostered under the auspices of the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society.
So, they organised an online Zoom-type meeting with Sergeant Pepper’s foster carer and one thing led to another and they adopted him. And as expected Ivy has become inseparable from Sergeant Pepper. They have formed a very close bond.
It seems that Ivy doesn’t yet understand or realise that she was born with a cleft lip and palate. And she doesn’t know that Sergeant Pepper was born with the same problem. But her mother believes that when she does learn about it and that Sergeant Pepper was born the same problem their relationship will only deepen. They’ll be soulmates.
Caitlin believes that Sergeant Pepper provides Ivy with a companion with which to continue their journey together; she won’t be alone on her journey.
Note: This is a video from another website which is embedded here. Sometimes they are deleted at source which stops them working on this site. If that has happened, I apologise but I have no control over it.
Her story was written up, as I understand it, on the website of the not-for-profit organisation Petco Love. They invite parents of rescue cats and dogs to submit stories about how their companion animals have changed their lives. They nominate the rescue organisation that organised the adoption. As a consequence, the story became one of a selected group of 100 as a winner. This resulted in a grant from the Petco Love charity to the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society.
The relationship between Ivy and Sergeant Pepper is one which not only benefits the pair of them but has benefited other rescue animals too.