Meet Dimity Jane
Sometimes the greatest blessings in our lives don’t appear that way to the outside world. That said, as any CH cat parent will attest, CH cats can be tremendous pets.
Natalie learned that first-hand when she adopted her kitten Dimity Jane from a friend. Although Dimity Jane didn’t meet the world’s standard of perfection, Natalie has found that Dimity Jane is so much more than that. Here’s their story:
“[Dimity Jane] is a pedigreed Japanese Bobtail, and her breeder, who is my friend, contacted me because she knew that Dimity would not be suitable for showing, and she could not sell her. All I knew about Dimity when I agreed to adopt her was that she did not use the litter box, and that she was clumsy.
She’d had a rough birth, and did not nurse at first; my friend is a vet tech and tube-fed her for her first two days of life. Then she started nursing on her own. But she was developmentally slower than her litter mates. She is still very tiny (2 lb.) and the vet said that her teeth were those of a younger kitten. When I put her on the floor, to show him her clumsy gait, he immediately said she had mild cerebellar ataxia (good, knowledgeable vet!), and that she wouldn’t get any better, but she wouldn’t get any worse.
Her biggest problem is that she shows exactly no interest in the litter box – I tried putting low-sided pans all over the house, and also some doggie piddle pads, but while she has looked at them, she hasn’t tried to use them at all. I don’t think standing is the problem, because she can stand, even if she is a bit wobbly. So I decided to diaper her. I’m using newborn size diapers, and folding them over to fit. She doesn’t mind the diaper, and although it took a while for her to figure out how to walk in them, she’s doing fine with it.
She eats and drinks like a little pig, and gets along well with my other cats. She plays like a crazy woman – anything that she can bat around gets thrown all around the house. She has also figured out how to climb the cat tree, even though she fell the first time she tried, but can’t get down.
She doesn’t really jump, but sort of bunny hops. She can get down from my bed because she slides down, but she can’t do that from one platform of the cat tree to the other. So I’ve had to rescue her a couple of times. Maybe she will be able to do it when she gets bigger, but I don’t know.
Other people are amazed that I agreed to adopt a handicapped cat, but she’s not really any more trouble than other cats I’ve had. I’m retired, and home most of the day, and I can watch her and rescue her if she’s really in trouble, but she’s surprised me at how she can figure things out. She is not mentally retarded! She’s as happy and cute and funny as any other cat, and I’m really glad I have her!