You have to love him: Toby the cat with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome

Photo: Toby’s Instagram account.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

His photograph caught my eye as I’m sure it has caught the eye of everybody else. This adorable male cat has loose skin caused by a rare condition called Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. He has a best buddy, Quinton, who has no teeth and they look after each other.

They live in Stroud, England and were adopted from the RSPCA by Georgina Price and her fiance Christopher Lardner. This couple wanted to adopt cats who particularly needed plenty of love and care. Georgina tells us that she saw them on the RSPCA website and fell in love with their sweet faces.

Photo: their Instagram account (words added)

Quinton is a seven-year-old black-and-white cat and Toby is the guy with the loose skin and he is six-years-of-age.

The condition means that Toby’s skin is very stretchy, loose and fragile because it lacks the normal amount of collagen. It’s a condition which affects people as well and I’ve discovered that the vascular type, the most severe type, can reduce lifespan but in general people with this condition have a normal lifespan.

The pair have an Instagram page with over 11,000 followers. Toby is prone to injury because of his condition even when he’s grooming himself or playing with his best mate, Quinton. The pair are inseparable and Georgina tells us that Quinton tries to clean Toby’s face when possible.

She is concerned that Toby might suffer some joint problems later in life and the excess weight of his skin can exacerbate that. They try and minimise this outcome by preventing him from jumping up and down from high places. Note: the symptoms may include loose joints, joint pain as well.

Other than the way he looks he’s a typical domestic cat companion although when he was at the RSPCA he was apparently terrified and could not be touched. He would hide behind Quinton. You can see he has come out of his shell and they both live a happy life in a great home.

What I like about this story is that Georgina and Christopher made a positive effort to adopt a couple of cats who particularly needed special care. I hope that they did not adopt them in order to make them social media stars. And I know that I’m being horribly cynical but you get that way after you’ve been scouring the Internet for 12 years looking at cat stories!

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Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

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