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Adopting an invisible cat: Joey's Journey by Margaret USA

Not much is known of his past besides growing up by a busy highway in Maryland. 

Some people were concerned for him and other cats in the area that they cared enough to eventually TNR them. After feeding them..this feral.. he started coming up to people and kids looking for food and attention.

Some lady, called the shelter and wanted to trap him because he was, "too sweet for the streets". (It actually says that in his paperwork).

Upon coming into the shelter, he had some wounds, bad teeth and needed some removed and he came up FIV+.

Fast forward to July 2019, cat dad and I moved into our first apartment earlier in the spring and we knew we wanted to get a cat and were now ready.

We put an application in for this one cat and it was adopted out to someone else. We came back to the shelter and when asked what we were looking for, we said we were looking for a cat that was less likely to be adopted and has been there awhile. They brought us up to Smoking Joe Frazier (Joey's whole name), they told us he has been there for months. They said he was a bigger boy (16+ lbs), he was dumb (he isn't dumb, he is just derpy), an older cat (2- 2 1/2 yrs old when we adopted him), a former feral and he was FIV+. He had A LOT against him in finding his forever home.

A lot of people want that healthy, fluffy, adorable, and sociable kitten 🐾

I see so many adorable kittens every day, and while I have nothing against adorable kittens, I wish everyone would be able to open their hearts to older, “uglier", or special-needs cats. They have the same-sized heart inside and can love you just as much — and maybe even more!

I'm so glad we did, he opened our hearts in ways we didn't know was possible and started our cat addiction 😹

We knew he needed us, as soon as we went up to his cage and he was calm and friendly. Little did we know, we needed him more than he needed us.

We made our house a home, he helped us through the pandemic, he supported us by being there when we needed him and never questioned anything, besides breakfast and dinner being late on occasion.

He now has a life with 4 other siblings and is so spoiled with millennial parents that don't have kids, just cats.

FIV+ can be scary at first. It's important to realize there is a lot of misinformation and FIV+ has been and continues (in smaller amounts) to be a death sentence to an otherwise healthy kitty.

We have 4 other cats we are FIV negative and he co-mingles just fine with them, while sharing the same food dishes and litter boxes.

The one major thing that comes with an FIV+ cat is bad dental no matter how proactive you's just in their DNA and the disease of FIV. Joey has had two dental cleaning and teeth extractions since we have got him and he has even seen a cat dentistry specialist for a canine tooth. So yearly and sometimes bi- yearly teeth exams/cleanings are necessary. They tell us he will probably eventually end up toothless as he gets old but for right now he is rocking what he has.

He taught us what it truly means to be the underdcat in life and what can happen if you have a little help from your friends/family members. The growth and confidence that he has grown with has been ameowzing.

It is sad to think that certain animals are considered “less adoptable” because they are not “perfect.” You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover and Joey's a prime example, he had the odds against him in life but we crossed paths and our lives and Joey's life have been forever changed.


Joey's mom, Margaret McConnell 

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