When Bill saw Shireen, formerly Phoenix, an adorable tabby and white kitten with severe frostbite and mild eyelid agenesis who had been pulled from an animal shelter by The Odd Cat Sanctuary, he was instantly drawn to the young cat. “I found out about Shireen through The Odd Cat Sanctuary Instagram account,” explains Bill, “and her story really touched me.”
In January 2018, Shireen was just a few months old when she was found living on the streets in Salem, Massachusetts, suffering from frostbite caused by the frigid New England winter. Shireen’s time at the shelter was running out, but Tara Kawczynski, president of the Odd Cat Sanctuary, saved the sweet kitten who — in addition to frostbite and eyelid agenesis — had other injuries that may have been the result of abuse. “When The Odd Cat Sanctuary saved her she was in bad shape,” says Bill.
The Odd Cat Sanctuary, a rescue organization in Salem, Massachusetts, specializes in saving and finding homes for special needs felines, so Tara was well-equipped to help Shireen. Not only had Shireen suffered frostbite and possible abuse, the young tabby and white cat was born with mild eyelid agenesis, a congenital condition. “Her eyelids never fully formed,” says Bill, so Shireen had to have drops put in her eyes to help keep them lubricated.
With the help of Tara and her foster mom, Shireen made a remarkable recovery — “She is the friendliest, sweetest little girl ever,” says Tara — and not long after she was spayed, this cute little kitten was ready to go to her forever home. Bill, who had been following Shireen for weeks, was smitten with the beautiful young cat, so he submitted an adoption application.
On February 10, 2018, Bill took this special little cat — who was found living on the streets in the middle of winter — home to live with him and his three other cats at his house in Foxborough, Massachusetts. “I hoped she would like my other cats,” says Bill, and thankfully, Princess Shireen became fast friends with Lord Stannis, Lady Sansa, and Lil Becca.
“She gets along great with my other cats,” says Bill. “She has fit in so perfectly here.” While the trauma Shireen experienced as a young kitten may have left with her physical scars, Bill insists that this gorgeous tabby and white cat doesn’t seem to have been affected emotionally or psychologically by her life before she was rescued by The Odd Cat Sanctuary. “People think that she might be a timid cat because of the [suspected] abuse but she is far from that,” says Bill. “She’s a very happy and healthy kitten.”
In fact, Bill no longer needs to put drops in Shireen’s eyes, and her ears are in far better shape than they were when she was taken to an animal shelter just two months ago. “Her ears will never fully heal,” says Bill, “but they look great and she has full hearing.”
While Shireen looks a bit different from the average cat due to her mild eyelid agenesis and the frostbite she suffered as a very young kitten, she’s a typical feline who enjoys hanging out in her cat tree and staring out the the window. This sweet tabby and white feline is also extremely active, and she loves playing with her sisters, Lady Sansa and Lil Becca. “They all chase each other through the house,” says Bill. “Shireen is the fastest of them all.”
Thanks to The Odd Cat Sanctuary and Bill, Shireen has gone from a homeless kitten who desperately needed a warm place to sleep to a happy and healthy young cat who has a cozy house filled with toys, food, and friends.
However, while her dad has radically changed Shireen’s young life by giving her a family, Bill insists this tabby and white kitten has made a huge impression in her new home. “She has made this house happier and much more active. I am grateful to The Odd Cat Sanctuary for saving her,” says Bill. “I love Shireen so much.”
To learn more about this beautiful cat, you can follow Shireen on Instagram.