Blind, Formerly Stray Cat Inspires His Adopters
by Bethany Meissner
Atia Mathai was driving home from a friend’s house when she spotted a street cat who seemed to be blind. She and her husband Sundeep already had a cat at home but she was afraid for the little blind stray. Atia knew that she had to help.
“I stopped the car,” said Atia to The Hindu. She went into a nearby restaurant and asked for help. She told reporters that the waitstaff “were very kind and helpful.” They even helped Atia catch the cat and put him into a cardboard box with holes so he could be transported safely. Atia wasn’t certain what she would ultimately do with the cat, but she knew she couldn’t leave him on the street.
Thankfully, Sundeep and Atia had already talked about adopting a feline friend for their current cat, Felix. The blind street cat turned out to be the perfect friend. The day after Atia brought him home, she found him sitting perfectly poised on a tall stool. His dignified stance made her decide that the blind cat needed to be named Rajah and kept as a part of her family. Felix agreed. Atia told reporters that within 24 hours, Felix and Rajah were playing as friends.
Veterinarians told Atia and Sundeep that Rajah’s blindness was likely natural and something with which he’d been born. However, Rajah’s blindness did confuse Felix a bit when they met. Atia explained, “At first, Felix didn’t understand why Rajah didn’t respond to body language, but they worked it out beautifully.” She added that the two cats quickly began to playfully wrestle with each other. She and Sundeep did put a bell on Felix so that Rajah could always hear him playing. They wanted to ensure that Felix couldn’t surprise Rajah just because Rajah couldn’t see him.
When not playing with Felix, Rajah enjoys playing with a ball that has a bell inside it or making Atia and Sundeep laugh by playfully pouncing on them from corners. Atia added that Rajah also “comes to the door and sniffs visitors” because he loves attention. In addition, Rajah has inspired the Mathais. “He makes you appreciate the way he navigates the world,” explained Atia. “When transplanted out of his comfort zone, his reaction is ‘I will explore this and see what to do.’” Plus, watching Rajah and Felix has taught them a lesson, adds Atia. “These cats taught us that there isn’t such a thing as a ‘dog person’ or ‘cat person’. Every pet has a distinct personality,” she told reporters.
Rajah has adapted beautifully to his life with the Mathais. In the mornings he usually comes to Atia for a cuddle and in the evenings he usually visits Sundeep for attention or play time. Plus, he enjoys high perches besides that tall stool. “There’s nothing you can do to budge him when he sits on your shoulder,” Atia said of his favorite perch.
As part of our mission, Halo believes that all animals impact our lives and Rajah has definitely impacted Atia and Sundeep. Atia summed up what Rajah has brought to her life when she told reporters, “I admire that courage he has. It’s a lesson for us.” We can always use a reminder to be courageous, but it’s especially poignant at the start of a new year. We hope that that the Mathais, and you, always have the courage of Rajah.