Meet Smokey One-Eye!

When living in Tel Aviv, Smokey One-Eye was one of several hundred street cats that I fed daily. Every evening she would jump up onto the low wall I fed her on to have her dinner and be petted. One evening, however, she did not jump onto the wall but rather into the wall. She kept trying to jump up but instead kept going head first against the side of the wall. I knew immediately that something was very wrong, ran around to where she was, scooped her up and hailed a cab to the vet.

Smokey One-Eye had had a stroke, perhaps due to her age or perhaps due to the intense heat that we had that summer. After two days in intensive care, the vet released her to me. The stroke had caused her to loose all sense of balance and orientation (probably exacerbated by the fact that she has only one eye) and Smokey could only walk in tight circles. When I got her home, I read up on methods for teaching humans how to recover their abilities after a stroke and began a regime I modified for a cat. Slowly, over the next few months, I helped Smokey One Eye re-learn how to walk in a straight line.

Today, four years later, Smokey One-Eye can not only walk in a straight line but also climb to the top of her kitty condo. We don't know how old Smokey is but, in cat years, she is certainly quite old. She is missing most of her teeth and, in the last year, she has become confused when in wide-open spaces and so prefers to spend her time in a tall, three-tier kitty condo with her food, water and personal litter box close to hand. Because of her age and health history, Smokey One-Eye is on a mainly canned food diet and oh, how she loves her wet food!

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