Back in February 2016, rescuers discovered a sad, dirty, stray cat who was just roaming the streets of Boston all alone.
His ears were terribly bloodied and also scarred, and he was hissing aggressively at anyone who tried to approach him.
By the looks of his condition, no one was sure how much longer he would survive on the streets.
The rescuers knew they simply had to save him.
This is Coconut!
Joni Nelson, who is the founder of Boston’s Forgotten Felines (BFF), has been rescuing cats for over 30 years. She, along with her team, were all on a TNR mission when they first found Coconut, the all white kitty.
Their initial plan was to neuter him and return him to his feral colony, but as soon as they noticed his poor condition, they knew they had to save him.
“Coconut was a mess. He had URI, UTI, goopy eyes and had something covering his tail that looked like oil. Not to mention ear mites and chronic diarrhea along with a bad back leg,” Nelson stated.
“But it was his nasty attitude that made him hard to like. The pathetic thing couldn’t go back to his colony in the shape he was in”.
Nelson managed to trap him and kept him in his cage. She also helped him get better, giving him medicine every day, but he was still acting quite mean.
“He was very difficult to feed … He would never look up but sure would lash out when I opened his cage.”
Nelson clearly realized that he didn’t always respond to visual cues. While she was cleaning his eyes, she sadly concluded that he was also indeed partially blind.
“After a long time, he started to calm down some,” Nelson went on to say. “I could go in and clean his box and put down food without him coming at me but he still hissed whenever anyone walked by his cage. Still, he never lifted up his head all the way, always looking down.”
Soon, Nelson also noted that Coconut was deaf.
“It took two very deep bites from him to realize he was deaf and could only see shadows,” Nelson added. “No wonder he was so nasty. He was frightened and no one knows the torture he went through living on the streets for so long in that condition … Many people told to me to put him to sleep that he was unadoptable. I couldn’t let him live his life in a cage and I couldn’t put him to sleep.”
Several months went by, and slowly, Coconut started to let his guard down.
“It took a long time to get him to let me touch him,” Nelson said. Until one day, he finally did. “First, just his head and only for a second or two.”
Sherri Deluca, who is a foster mom, learned about Coconut’s plight and immediately wanted to take him in. She wanted nothing more than to teach him how to love and be loved. She has some battle scars, but Coconut really started to come around.
“Lots of love and attention and he learned to trust and love,” Nelson noted.
Ashley Ward took Coconut to his second foster home and that is where he continued to thrive.
“Coconut is really a sweetheart,” Ward explained to The Dodo. “Every time I walk into the room, he hobbles over to me to get pets … As soon I start petting him he is instantly purring … He will curl up right next to your side and snuggle his head under your arm so that you can pet him.”
The transformation has been astounding. Remember, he was a deaf and partially blind street cat who had to fight for everything to survive. He never had anyone show him love before.
“It has been truly beautiful to see the transformation in Coconut, from scared abandoned street cat to the kitty he is today, one who loves to be pet and loved,” Danapel C. de Veer, who is one of the other volunteers for BFF, said to The Dodo. “It’s amazing what love, patience, security, and kindness can do for a kitty like Coconut.”
Coconut has come such a very long way, but his journey isn’t over. He is now in need of a forever home.
If you yourself are interested in adopting Coconut, you can send an email to [email protected]