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He's lost his sight, but not his spirit
You can’t help but smile when you spend time with Charlie. He’s one of those cats that just loves people. Loves cuddles, loves a scratch behind his left ear… loves to eat! In so many ways Charlie is just like a normal kitten. The only difference is, Charlie is blind.
Charlie was brought into the SPCA Auckland Hospital by a member of the public. Charlie was the neighbours cat and they had become increasing concerned about his eyes. Although he was a healthy weight, both Charlie’s eyes were very sunken and he clearly had an infection that needed treating. Thanks to supporters like you, we were able to get Charlie the immediate help he needed. We had a vet check him over and give him medication for his eye, and we were able to give him a warm bed and shelter while I investigated his story further.
As senior Inspector, I was asked to follow up the case. I discovered that Charlie was one of 10 cats on the property. The owners had noticed that Charlie was sick, but didn’t understand the consequences of cat flu, and were not able to afford to take him to the vet. I spent time talking to them about caring for cats, and their obligations under the animal welfare act. I also made it very clear that failing to provide medical treatment was a breach of the act, and they could face court action.
In the end Charlie’s owners decided to surrender all the cats into the care of SPCA Auckland and I gave them a formal written warning that will stay on record. People ask me why we don’t prosecute every case we see. For us, it’s about getting the right outcome for the animals involved. Sometimes that isn’t a lengthy court case. Sometimes it’s educating people, and ensuring the safety of all animals on the property. It’s a sad reality, but this injury was a result of ignorance, not malice. I now know that all the cats are safe, and I will continue to monitor the property to ensure they don’t get any more animals they are unable to care for.
What makes this story even sadder is we know that Charlie wasn’t born blind, and if he’d had access to proper vet care, this almost certainly wouldn’t have happened. At SPCA Auckland we receive so many young kittens struggling with flu. Without the support of donors like you, we wouldn’t be able to give them the treatment they need to get well, and most importantly give them the vaccinations they need to help keep them healthy. By donating today, you can help kittens like Charlie get a second chance at life. You can give them a chance to find a loving forever home.
I knew when Charlie’s owners signed him over to SPCA Auckland that the outcome might not be good. For adult cats, losing their sight is a trauma they do not recover from. Without sight, they have no idea of their surroundings, and what dangers lie ahead. They are constantly fearful of being attacked, end up hiding in a corner, never relaxing or enjoying life.
I am so pleased this is not the case for Charlie. Being removed from the world he knew, surrounded by strange people hasn’t fazed him. I guess he is just one of those cats that are always willing to trust. I like to think that he knows he’s safe with us, and that we will do all we can do make sure he finds the right family. I know the SPCA team will do all they can to find him a great home that will give him all the love this sweet little boy deserves
Charlie still has a long way to go. He is still battling with flu and is currently out at foster care recovering. He has been to see an eye specialist and will need an operation before he can be put up for adoption. But the outlook is positive.
By donating today you can ensure that cats like Charlie receive the medical care they need to get well. It will mean that our Inspectors can be out on the road 24/7 helping to protect Auckland’s animals in need.
$30 provides Charlie with a warm bed and shelter
$65 vaccinates a cat from flu
$105 will help keep an Inspector no the road, rescuing an animal in need.
Please give generously and help give animals like Charlie, a second chance.
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