A 3 year-old Levelland, Texas boy is responsible for the rescue of a stray kitten who was born without eyes, and will adopt his new little best friend.
Audilas Burton was walking to the park with his family on Saturday when the little kitten captured his attention. Once Adilas got a close-up look at the kitty he noticed he did not seem to have eyes.
“We were walking to the park and he was in the road,” Audilas told KAMC TV news.
Crystal Burton, Audilas’ mom, says her little boy and the kitten immediately became inseparable.
“The cat took off towards him as he was running towards me,” Crystal said. “And he looked at me and said, ‘Mom I just want to keep the cat’.”
Audilas named his new friend Murdoch.
Concerned about the kitten’s condition, Crystal contacted the Lazarus Rescue Foundation, which specializes in neonatal kitten rescue.
Murdoch visited local veterinarian, Dr. Robert Taylor Monday morning, and Dr. Taylor says Murdoch was born with his condition, which is most likely that of phthisis bulbi, a rare genetic disorder.
“When you first look at him he looks like he has no eyeballs at all, almost like there are just kind of empty sockets there,” Dr. Taylor said. “This would be called phthisis bulbi, which means small or tiny eyeball, and it is a non-functioning eyeball way down deep in that socket, which essentially leaves him with no eyes.”
“I’ve seen a lot of eyes that get small from an injury or from an infection, that turn into a phthisis bulbi,” Dr. Taylor said. “But not many that have been born that way, and so this would be pretty rare.”
The Lazarus Rescue Foundation is working with Crystal and Dr. Taylor so that the Burton family can officially adopt Murdoch.
“He is a very unique kitty,” Jessi Holeman with the Lazarus Foundation said. “He is very friendly, happy and playful. We think he is going to have a really great life.”
The Lazarus Foundation wrote about Murdock at Facebook early this morning, saying: “We are relieved to learn that Murdock was not abused and was actually born with a very rare defect affecting his eyes. Although he will never be able to see, he will have a great life. We will continue to post updates on his facebook page but we will be changing the name. Interestingly enough, our very own Marshmallow (rescued at four weeks old in September), has a lesser degree of this rare condition and she also came from Levelland. She has sight and was adopted late last year, but it’s clear we have some stray kitties to look for and spay/neuter so more kittens aren’t born with this condition.”
Watch the KAMC TV report on the story: