A Cat Born Without Eyelids

St. Patty

St. Patty, a 14-month-old kitten, has brought many residents of a New Jersey town together.

This kitten was rescued by Jennifer Smith, a Furrever Friends Rescue and Volunteers foster mom, on St. Patrick’s Day.

St. Patty had numerous health problems, including the fact that she had no eyelids. The fur around her eyes went into her corneas, causing her pain and discomfort.

“At first the veterinarian thought she had inverted eyelids,” said Smith. “But we learned she didn’t have any eyelids. So we took her to specialists at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine.”

Dr. James Schoster, a veterinarian for 30 years who specializes in veterinary opthalmology, saw St. Patty and said she has an unusual birth defect. This is the fourth time in his career that Dr. Schoster has seen something like this.

Initially, Dr. Schoster injected collagen above the eye where the eyelid should be to stretch the tissues and begin recreation of the eyelid.

Two weeks later, St. Patty underwent through surgery to remove a layer of hair that was rubbing her corneas.

Her surgeries have totaled around $1,000, but community donations have paid for all of St. Patty’s health costs. Also the University of Pennsylvania discounted the surgery by 50 percent.

This little kitten has recovered from her surgery, but she still is sensitive to light and is afraid of opening her eyes too wide. And she has made friends with the other kittens in Smith’s house.

“She doesn’t see real well, but she gets around good,” said Smith.

St. Patty has developed a form of glaucoma, so she needs expensive eye drops to help her. The drops have been donated by a pharmacy which has saved the rescue $300.

Some fur has grown back around St. Patty’s eyes, which has caused more discomfort. Dr. Schoster will perform another surgery to remove the last pieces of fur.

“She will never be normal,” said Dr. Schoster. “She also had poor eyesight. But we’ll do what we can to ease her discomfort.”

Furrever Friends Rescue and Volunteers said they are lucky to have found St. Patty.

Source: Courier Post Online

5 Responses to “A Cat Born Without Eyelids”

  1. JustMe says:

    I love happy endings. I’m glad she was rescued by this group and now has her own loving home.

  2. Lynne says:

    I’m surprised her eyes were still intact! Awesome what vets can do these days!

  3. Donna says:

    Compassion ,never goes out of style.The rescurer,the mark of a quality person.My wish is the world would be fill with this type of person.Blessings to St Patty.

  4. Margaret Stewart says:

    I recently adopted a cat that had been “dumped” in our neighborhood. It has no eyelids. When I first brought Sam into the house, I noted that his eyes were red-rimmed, but never looked closely into his eyes. He was very shy at that time. Recently, I started to notice tht his eyelashes, per se, were at the top of his eyes, and I couldn’t remember him blinking, and suddenly realized that he had no eyelids! Being an indoor cat, he hasn’t been exposed to a lot of direct sunlight, and the redness has gone. After reading the above, I am going to have his eyesight checked to see if there are any problems lurking.
    One of my last cats, who had feline leukemia for 10 of his 15 years, went blind, but he was just as lovable sightless as he was when he was healthy.

  5. kim says:

    I have recently taken on 2 gorgeous little kittens, i hoped would make good mousers at the stables & also noticed red rimmed, sore eyes, took him to the vets & she said he had no eyelids & is 95% blind - he is a very happy kitten & manages to play and chase things. He meant to be going for op soon but vet couldnt even guarantee he’ll survive the anaesthetic, he very small for 9 wks. What to do??!!!!

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