When Victoria went with her friend to their local animal shelter in September 2016, she didn’t plan on adopting a cat a for herself. “I already had three,” explains Victoria, “so I didn’t go with the intention of getting another.” However, while trying to help her friend find the perfect feline to adopt, Bruce — an adorable tabby and white kitten with a unique face — caught Victoria’s eye. “I saw Bruce and fell in love!” says Victoria. “He was only 8 months old and had been abandoned.”
Victoria learned that Bruce had been born with a cleft lip, a condition that causes him to have an opening in his upper lip that extends into his nose. While she hadn’t planned on adopting a fourth cat when she agreed to accompany her friend to the animal shelter near her home in Manchester, England, Victoria was certain that Bruce was meant to be a part of her family.
“It seemed like he had been overlooked at the shelter,” explains Victoria, “and I just knew I wanted to give him a loving home.” That day, Victoria brought the adorably different 8-month-old kitten home with her, unsure of what sort of special accommodations she would need to make for Bruce or how he would get along with his new brothers, Ron, Chad, and Alex.
Thankfully, it didn’t take long for Bruce, the baby of the family, to settle in with his big brothers, and Victoria quickly learned that her newest addition wasn’t all that different from the average cat, despite his unique face.
In fact, Victoria discovered that the only time Bruce’s cleft lip becomes an issue is after he’s eaten. “As Bruce is missing part of his lip and his nostril, he does get food stuck up his nose,” explains Victoria, but she simply dislodges any debris using a wet cotton swab.
Aside from the occasional nose cleaning, Bruce doesn’t require any special attention, and he is a happy and healthy cat who loves hanging out with his brothers and rolling around on his back. This handsome tabby and white cat — who recently celebrated his second birthday — also enjoys playing fetch, and Bruce’s mom is happy to oblige. “Bruce loves to pick up a toy in his mouth, bring it to me, and cry until I throw it!” says Victoria.
While Victoria didn’t go looking for a special needs cat, she’s so glad she found Bruce when she did, and she hopes other people will be inspired to consider adopting adorably different animals like him. “A cleft clip is mostly cosmetic,” says Victoria. “It will not cause any distress or large vet bills.”
While Victoria has found Bruce to be just as easy to care for as his siblings who don’t have congenital conditions, there’s something undeniably special about this handsome tabby and white cat who stole her heart when he was just eight months old. “Bruce is my baby, along with his other three brothers,” says Victoria. “I’m so happy that we were able to give this gorgeous boy a forever home.”
To learn more about this adorable cat, you can follow Bruce on Instagram.