This shelter-dwelling feline had an immunodeficiency virus, a painful case of entropion (or inverted eyelids), and sported an unbearably nasty attitude which made finding him a forever home feel seemingly impossible.
One day, though, a littleluck strolledinto his life. Danielle Joy-Whatley, owner ofSecond Edition Book Shopwalked into Catsby’sshelter. Sheimmediately sensed that underneath Catsby’snastypain liveda happy cat, dying to break free ofsuffering’s tight grasp.
So, Joy-Whatleydecided to test her theory, adopt Catsby, and nurse him back to health.
Watching Catsby interact with her customers, Joy-Whatley told LittleThings she’s learned “how just a little time with spent with an animal can change a persons whole demeanor.”
Keep scrolling to learn more about this incredible cat and all the amazing ways he continues gifting joy to eachbookstore customer he greets.
At9years old, Catsby the cat was living in pain.
He had FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus) and suffered from entropion a condition that caused his eyelid edges to constantly, and painfully, roll inward.
This never-endingpain provoked Catsby to exhibit all sorts ofaggressive behaviors, especially toward other cats. He feltseemingly fated him to stay orphaned at hisshelter indefinitely.
However, lucky for little Catsby, his guardian angel was en route, about to change his life forever.
Danielle Joy-Whatley, owner of Second Edition Book Shopin Davie, FL, came upon Catsby during a shelter visit and grew immediately attached.
Early on, she developeda strong inklingthat much of Catsby’s emotional aggression could betiedto his physical ailments which the shelter had been doing little to mend.
So, this animal loverdecided to try her luck and adopt him. In the process, shegiftedCatsbythe proper chance to heal his wounds and revealhis true personality, finally free of pain’s grueling burden.
When asked what qualities initially inspired her to adopt him, she told LittleThings, “It was actually the fact that I didn’t think anyone else would adopt him. Younger, healthier kittens are most often what people are looking for. He just had this look of hopelessness.”
However, as she explained, “I have a house full of assorted animals and three teenagers. I knew I couldn’t take him home. But I knew I could make it work at the bookshop. I’ve never once regretted it.”
So, Joy-Whatley adopted little Catsby, and shuttled him off to his new home her book shop. This adoring animal lover financed Catsby’s expansive eye surgery,and as he healed, watched as his authenticpersonalitystart rearing its adorable head.
Once fully healed, free from years of anguish, this little cat’s demeanor completely transformed.
Catsby becameagrateful, loving, cuddly feline the perfect greeter for Joy-Whatley’s adorablestore.
Over the past few years, Catsby has truly embraced his new life. He’s since become the face of Joy-Whatley’s bookstore, donning the adorable nickname “CEO Kitty.”
As she told LoveMeow, “He loves his second chance and is incredibly grateful. People can sense that. It’s a mutual admiration.”
Catsbycuddles every single customer that sets foot in Second Edition Book Shop.
Joy-Whatleycontinued, “He goes down the aisle, follows people, and rubs on their ankles to make sure they know that he’s there.”
Joy-Whatley told LittleThings, “One of the most surprising things (and most unexpected) is how he has softened some of my most difficult customers.
“Ive see the most cranky, grumpy people melt when Catsby jumps on the counter and purrs at them… And they actually baby talk to him! It’s showed me how everyone has a softer, more compassionate side.”
Over time, little Catsby has also developed quite the avid social media following, attracting attention from over 27,000 followers all over the world.
One of the most memorable experiences Joy-Whatley’s had with Catsby thus far, she told LittleThings, was, “The first time a fan’ from Instagram came to meet him. The very first time someone walked in and said Is Catsby here? I was stunned. I never, ever expected that.”
Now, at 14, Catsby’s days are jam-packed with visits from all sorts of familiar and new friends. Local regulars flock to the bookstore to cuddle the shop’s lovable CEO Kitty, whileout-of-towners travel from their native homes just to meetlittle Catsby for the first time.
Joy-Whatleyexplained, “Many have traveled very far. It really touched me that someone would plan a trip to Florida around meeting a cat. And how excited they were to see him and pet him. It really meant something to them.
“I realize now that its because he is in a public place. He is very accessible. Most of the other cats on social media live in private homes. With Catsby, people have the ability to stop by and visit… And as a result, we get visitors from all over the globe.
“It amazes me how many people he has touched.”
This loving cat certainly pays his second chance forward.
His story continues inspiring others all over the world to, in the face of hardship and insufferable pain, trust that a bright future, filled with boundless happiness is never completely out of reach.
Welcoming Catsby into Second Edition Book Shop has certainly changed Joy-Whatley and her community’s lives for the better.
Her advice, she explained to LittleThings, to other pet lovers considering embarking on a similar journey is, “If you are thinking about rescuing an older shelter animal, do it.
“Stop thinking about it and just go for it. You will find that they change your life far more then you change theirs. I promise.”
Finding ways to shed lingering pain can open all sorts of magical doors. Gifted with a second chance, little Catsby continues inspiring his community with endless cuddles and bountiful love.
What do you think of Catsby’s story? Have you ever rescued an older cat? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.