Max, an orange tabby, looks and acts like any normal cat. He grooms himself, tries to get attention from humans, and in general, is a curious cat. And he rules the roost at the Best Friends Animal Clinic in Oregon.
But up close, people who meet Max see that this cat is a bit different. He was born without eyes and teeth.
He was first discovered on a ranch two years ago. He was skittish and ran into inanimate objects.
Committed Alliance to Strays decided to take in Max and care for him. When they first heard about him, they thought he may have been tortured. But a veterinarian determined Max had most likely been born without eyes and teeth and probably a few other internal parts because of a virus his mother had before his birth.
The staff tried to find his owners, but no one stepped up. Dr. Shannon Sierra, the veterinarian who was caring for Max, fell in love with the cat and decided to adopt him.
Sierra said: “At first, I figured he’d survive if he was cared for, but I didn’t know what his quality of life would be like. Then I spent some time with him and realized how well he gets around. He doesn’t know he’s handicapped. He just does what he needs to do and he does it really well. I figured out pretty quickly that I was the only one who was really having any issues.”
Now, two years later, Max works 9-5 alongside Sierra at the clinic. At night, he plays with six other cats, a puppy, and a group of foster kittens at Sierra’s house.
Some of Max’s favorite hobbies are: riding in a car, and racing around and leaping mid-air inside an enclosed area in the backyard. (Sierra has foam wrapped around all of her furniture for Max’s protection.)
This active cat also has a strange love for bales of hay. Perhaps he was born in a barn?
“It’s the weirdest thing. Whenever he gets around hay, you’d think it was catnip. A lot of cats like it but he has this huge attraction to it. He rubs all over it. He’d climb inside it if he could. Makes me think maybe he was raised around straw,” Sierra said.
When people first see Max, they first ask what is wrong with him. When Sierra tells them he was born like that, they sigh and say “poor guy.” But Sierra said if they knew him, they would realize that he is an extremely happy cat.
The executive director of Committed Alliance to Strays added: “There’s a saying we really like that says, ‘Who can believe that there is no soul behind those luminous eyes?’ With little Maxwell you don’t have to see his eyes. You can feel his soul.”
Source: Mail Tribune