Georgina Price and her fiance Christopher Lardner are good people who love to adopt cats that ‘nobody else wanted’. Their first rescue was Herbie and he was a 16-year-old cat who managed to spend 5 beautiful months with them. During the short time, Herbie’s parents forged a bond with the old cat and cried tears of sadness when he left.
Despite that, the parents decided that they need to get another rescue and give these cats the best life ever.
“I just kept thinking about all the animals that might only have five months left and would spend the whole of that time in a shelter. We decided we would look for an extra special cat that might take a little longer to find a home,” said Georgina.
Toby is 6 years old and is a short-hair feline with grayish fur. He’s a happy fellow, but his appearance is far from the typical ‘cute’ looks cats usually have. That’s because Toby is diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and has loose skin all over her face.
This congenital condition comes from the lack of collagen in Toby’s skin, so he’d actually look more like a bulldog at times.
Meanwhile, Quinton had all his teeth removed when rescued. While he looks regal and majestic, this also means that his parents have to be extra careful in what they feed him, how to care for his diet and make sure he’s happy.
Georgina talks about how she made her handsome boys, “We found them on the RSPCA website when they were looking for a home.”
When Georgina first walked into the shelter, she found the cats huddled together.
“They’re a bonded pair, the RSPCA advertised them together. And we thought if we can help two cats rather than one, then that’s the best possible outcome.”
“They were both terrified and huddled right at the back. Toby just hid behind Quinton the whole time, trembling.”
Toby was extremely nervous and skittish, which gave the pair even more work to do as they have to give him space from time to time. Yet, they need to learn to get Toby used to humans’ presence.
And now, Toby and Quinton are official owners of Georgina and Christopher.
“They were just so scared and were living under the bed for weeks but food and love eventually got them out,” Georgina said. “And now, they own the place. They just do whatever they want and act mad when you turn the light on if they’re asleep on the bed or something.”
The pair has never heard about EDS and only learned about it after adopting Toby. Georgina explains her experience taking care of Toby:
“We’re very lucky that his condition seems to be mild and we manage it very easily. His skin is just weaker than it should be so he gets lots of tears, especially around his neck and head.”
“We’re always telling him off for scratching or cutting his nails to reduce the chance of injury and you can see he just thinks ‘leave me alone, I can take care of myself.’”
“He seeks Quinton out to help him clean himself so Quinton will lick his face and head, particularly any cuts.”
As an addition, Georgina wants to add that Toby is just as spoiled and loving as other cats are. “He loves belly rubs and will plop himself next to you and look at you, waiting for you to rub his belly,” Georgina added.
Georgina wants to raise awareness of not only to adopt, but also to show love for cats who might not be loved due to their congenital diseases and generally different conditions. Of course, owners have to put extra work into caring for them.
“It doesn’t take any more to love them and despite whatever it is that may make them ‘special needs’, they are still beautiful animals with their own amazing personalities, likes, dislikes, and the ability to love you back.”