KITTEN WIRE: BREAKTHROUGH ALERT - LEAF

OAKLAND — She arrived at the shelter like so many: tiny, hissy and scared. "Unable to handle," shelter workers noted.

That's a challenge Cat Town is willing to accept. 

Experience has taught us that the right kind of human interaction, and some time, can transform almost any cat into a terrific companion. Leaf, a little ball of muted tortoiseshell-colored fur, is no different.

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This 3-month-old girl has made so much progress in just the few weeks that she and her sisters, Aspen and Oak, have been with us. And a major breakthrough this week had my happy tears dripping down on her fuzzy face: she curled up on my chest and purred her heart out until she fell asleep. 

Leaf is part of our Forgotten Kitten Project, which I wrote about last week on the Kitten Wire. These are cats that were not socialized during those key early weeks. Volunteers like me and Cat Town's staff work with them daily to help them overcome their fears and have positive interactions with humans.

We are already seeing it pay off. 

Volunteer Jen S., shown here giving Leaf and her sisters chicken baby food on a tongue depressor, was among the first to pet Leaf. 

Volunteer Jen S., shown here giving Leaf and her sisters chicken baby food on a tongue depressor, was among the first to pet Leaf. 

This little dilute tortie is no longer quick to hide when someone walks in the room. Her instinct to hiss is giving way to squeaky meows. And I should mention the belly rubs. Leaf has taken to flopping on her back, exposing her tufts of white fur and inviting me to rub her belly while she purrs and makes air biscuits. 

This is the kind of progress we know is possible. 

Watch for more updates with Leaf and her sisters on the Kitten Wire and on Instagram. And if you want to meet any of our adoptable cats, book a visit, or email us at info@cattownoakland.org. And pro tip: Ask the volunteer on duty for a tour of the custom-designed studios where you can see this sweet girl and the other members of our Forgotten Kitten Project.

If you're feeling inspired by our Forgotten Kitten Project, you can make a donation of any size to help us keep doing this life saving work. 

Ginny

Kitten Program Manager