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Help Kitten See a Bright Future

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UPDATE: April 2014

People say that besides their unique brindled color pattern, tortoiseshell cats like Quinn have something called “tortitude.” Think “extreme kitty attitude,” meaning willful, unpredictable, feisty. In Quinn’s case, however, there was little evidence of tortitude and every indication of fortitude — because without courage and confidence — and your generous donations — this stray kitten never would have made it.

Born with a congenital condition called eyelid agenesis, in which the eyelids fail to form normally, Quinn was in serious trouble and great pain when she arrived in our care. But thanks to Quinn’s spirit, our expert medical team, and Beth Stern’s amazing gift for feline fostering, Quinn’s eyelids are functioning, her vision is normal, and her attitude is great. She also has a new name, Sunshine, and a new, loving home.

In late February, Cindy, our senior kennel manager, drove to Connecticut with Beth to hand-deliver Sunshine to her new home with Dave, who’d also adopted George and Arnold, two adult cats, the previous July. It was crucial for everyone to know that all three cats could agree to live together.

“Dave’s house was perfect for the cats,” says Cindy. “There was plenty of room for them to run and play, and by the time we left, Sunshine had fallen asleep on her bed while Dave was playing guitar. Each day the three cats are making progress toward becoming friends.”

One month later and the adoption is official. Sunshine is now a part of the family. And who knows? Maybe Dave is serenading her with a few old John Denver’s classics. We’d suggest, “Sunshine on My Shoulders,” for one.

Have a great life, sweet Sunshine!

UPDATE: November 2013

Quinn had surgery on both her eyes, and we are pleased to report that she came through the procedure very well.

At this point, Quinn appears to have full vision, but we will not for certain until she is completely healed, which will take another week or so. Also, we don’t know at this stage whether Quinn’s upper eyelids will be fully functionally or whether she will need a second surgery. We will keep you posted.

Once Quinn is ready, we will keep our promise to find her a permanent home where she will be loved and cherished for the rest of her life.

Thank you again to everyone who contributed so we could give Quinn, and other animals like her, the treatment they need and deserve!

Quinn's Story

When a Good Samaritan brought this stray kitten to North Shore Animal League America’s Medical Center, it was immediately clear that something was terribly wrong.

The kitten, whom our staff named Quinn, was in severe pain. Our veterinary team quickly determined that her discomfort was caused by a congenital condition called eyelid agenesis, in which the eyelids fail to form normally.

Eyelids perform many essential functions: They not only shield the cornea from injury and infection, they also contribute to the production of tears, which keep the eyes from drying out.


Left untreated, eyelid agenesis causes patients to develop scarring, pigmentation and extremely painful ulcers on the cornea. Without surgical intervention, Quinn may become blind.

But we have a solution: Although Quinn has already suffered some scarring on her eyes, with proper treatment, we are very optimistic that she will have partial and perhaps even full vision.

Will you help this precious kitten receive the intricate surgery she needs?

A specialist in veterinary ophthalmology will perform the procedure, to make sure that Quinn gets only the best in care. Once she heals, we will keep our promise to find her a loving home with an adopter who will treasure her for life.

Please contribute generously so that Quinn, and other animals like her, can receive the treatment they need to live fully, happy lives.

On behalf of Quinn, thank you for your support!

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