Rey the cat is poised to be the next social media sensation, and it's not just because she's adorable and fun to watch. (Which she totally is.)
The kitty—who is, fittingly, named after the butt-kicking heroine from the Star Wars saga—is blind, but she doesn't let that stop her from living a happy, healthy feline life. Rey, who lives alongside her fellow adopted cat siblings, Leia and Georgie, is the furbaby of cat dad Alex from Chicago, Ill.
Rey, who was born blind and whose eye sockets were closed in order to avoid infections, is described by her cat dad as being sweet, gentle, and caring. He notes that she is also playful and has an appetite for life—and for turkey. Rey's kitty adventures are captured on her social media pages, from her Facebook to her Instagram.
"I love having her company and I am loving the support that I am receiving through the Internet community for her," Alex tells petMD. "It makes me have more hope for humanity seeing all the positive comments and messages she gets on her social media pages."
Her fanbase is growing by the day, thanks to photos of squee-worthy playtimes with her cat siblings to aww-inducing cuddles with her owner.
"My favorite thing about being Rey's dad is that I get the opportunity to show the world that special and unique animals like her are more than worth adopting and loving," says Alex. "I feel very lucky to own and care for such an amazing creature. She reminds me to never give up."
Despite being blind, Rey is fearless and is constantly learning what her limitations are and how to adjust them accordingly. "It's amazing to watch her," he says. "She must have a complete map of my apartment in her head along with dimensions of most of the furniture we have here. She jumps up and down from most objects in the house."
Alex notes that he is careful about where he puts things in the apartment so that she doesn't run into them or hurt herself. He also picks her up very slowly so that she is not surprised by him.
He mentions that occasionally Rey will have to be helped at the litter box, but it's a small price to pay for having such an amazing kitty. As Alex puts it, "Rey has brought me and my two human roommates inspiration and joy that makes our apartment feel full of life."
For anyone thinking about getting a pet with special needs like Rey, Dr. Elizabeth McKinstry, VMD, advises that pet parents with a blind cat (whether the cat was born blind or has gone blind) keep things in order for the feline.
“If you don’t move the furniture, they can get along really, really well," she says. She also notes that "food and water should be easily accessible," particulary if the cat is not good at jumping or climbing.
Image via @reythekitten