Prince Ray: The Blind Kitty with a Big Heart

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Prince ray 2On October 6, 2013, a family arrived at C & W Rustic Hollow Shelter with a kitty in their car. C & W does not normally take in just any kitty that someone brings by car since they have to pre-qualify and there is often a shortage of space.

However, there are times that are exceptional and no one could refuse Prince Ray. The family had found him wandering the streets of town, lost and thin. They checked their neighborhood and posted signs notifying the area but received no response.

The sweet boy was not only neutered and declawed but totally blind as well, earning him the name Prince Ray. It’s amazing that he survived out on the streets for any length of time! He settled in quite nicely and started gaining weight.

The staff at C & W took Prince Ray to a specialty eye clinic 2 hours from the sanctuary, hoping to raise the money for eye surgery so he could see. Unfortunately, they were told that there was nothing to do as he has degenerative retinal disease and at age 14+, he will never see again.

Despite such challenges, Prince Ray’s personality is fantastic and he lives in the director’s office. He knows when “coffee time” is in the morning and begs to come out of the office and sit on the co-director/founder of C & W’s lap.Prince Ray

Even more amazing, Prince Ray is now giving back from that wonderful personality as a pet therapy kitty. He visits the nursing home with staff members and is so good with the people there. He is a great source of encouragement and many people can relate to him with his advanced age and eyesight problems.


Prince Ray is only one of a few blind kitties at C & W Rustic Hollow Shelter. C & W is a no-kill shelter tucked away in a valley of northeast Iowa. The 350+ felines that call C & W their forever home have woods, creeks and plenty of wildlife to keep them occupied. Inside the six buildings and houses that the felines reside in, there are even TVs with Catsitter videos and cartoons to watch!  Outside, the cats enjoy screened “catios” and playrooms, full of other felines lounging in the sun.

C & W is home to cats deemed “adoption challenged” by other shelters or humane societies around Iowa and the US and also to special needs cats who may have chronic medical, physical, neurological or behavioral issues.

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