A cat with an eye condition has recently become an unlikely social media sensation after photographs of her wearing special sunglasses went viral.
To date, she has had three surgeries to help her condition, but with no eyelids Karen is required to apply eye drops several times a day.
In agreement with her vet, Karen came up with the idea to get the cat some sunglasses, which would ultimately protect Bagel’s sensitive eyes.
The grey feline has now grown used to the eyewear, associating wearing them with a feeling comfort and protection.
Having the sunglasses – lined with stick-on jewels – helps stop all kinds of debris from going in Bagel’s eyes, which could damage her cornea and lead to blindness.
Every once in a while Karen will remove her eyewear to allow the cat to wash, but when she’s out in public, she usually keeps them on, drawing a lot of attention.
This one of a kind feline is now known to her thousands of social media followers as Sunglass Cat.
Karen, 48, said: ‘Bagel is the most loving, gentle, calmest and kindest cat that you’ll ever meet.
‘Everyone always wants to touch her as well as hold her.”
‘They want to stop and talk to me about her sunglasses, which I always do since it’s so rare to see a cat in glasses, and I tell them why she’s wearing them as well as her condition.”
“People are always amazed at how calm she is.’
She now hopes that her popularity will encourage others, in turn to adopt and volunteer to care for special needs animals.
As well as the condition with her eyes, Sunglass Cat also has allergies and cannot regulate her own body temperature, which is why she is clothed in some of her Instagram shots.
Karen added: ‘Animals deserve to be happy in a loving home.
‘If I didn’t adopt Bagel she probably would’ve been returned and euthanized due to her special needs – I couldn’t fathom Bagel not being here.
‘She has touched so many people as well as helped numerous people through situations in their lives.”
‘As long as I can put a smile on someone’s face, make them have a better day, look at life differently because of our posts, then her Instagram account is successful.’