Sweet Toni is a 13-year-old cat who lived a terrible life in the home of an animal hoarder. No one knows just how terrible her situation really was, but they can tell that she has had to fight to survive this long.
After years of suffering, this gentle-natured cat has finally found sanctuary in her own home with a very loving mama all to herself.
Toni was rescued by a city shelter, but they soon realized that keeping her there would do more harm than good. She was covered with scratches - likely from other animals that lived in the hoarding house with her.
She never really relaxed and when she slept, it was with her paws over her eyes. Rescuers think that she was kept in a place where the lights were never turned off in her former house.
Toni moved from the shelter to The Brooklyn Cat Cafe, but she was so stressed by the other cats, that she would hiss and run away whenever one came near. Thankfully, Toni didn't have to stay there for more than a few days.
Erin Weaver noticed Toni on her third day at the cat cafe: I could tell she was so miserable with 30 other cats running around," Erin Weaver, Toni's new mom, told The Dodo. "As soon as she got to my house, I could see her visibly relax when she realized there were no other animals around."
Even as Toni began to relax, she fell ill. The sweet senior lady developed an upper respiratory infection and then her cornea ruptured.
Vets decided to remove her eye, which made a major difference in Toni's health and disposition!
"She's now a one-eyed very spoiled cat," Weaver said. "She came home the same day after her surgery and has been purring nonstop since then."
Although she's feeling better, Toni will always have some strange quirks and habits that are hold-overs from her time living in a hoarder house.
Weaver tells The Dodo that Toni will only drink running water; collects trash, which she piles up in a corner of the house; and wants her new mom to hold her back paws.
But this new lease on life has given Toni an incredible lift to her spirits: "She does NOT act like a 13-year-old (now that she's recovered from her surgery)," Weaver said. "It's amazing because she doesn't even seem to be bothered by only having one eye. She still chases her toys just as well and doesn't seem hindered by it at all."
Follow Toni's adventures on Instagram here.
[h/t The Dodo]