She was just days old when she was found with her two siblings and mum Ebony living in a greenhouse in Normanton area of Wakefield. The family were taken in by Keighley-based Yorkshire Cat Rescue where centre manager, Sam Davies immediately noticed that something wasn’t quite right with baby Peanut.
“Peanut’s little head tends to twist to the right. Initially we hoped that we could straighten her out with a bespoke exercise regime but sadly, she is suffering from a neurological disorder called cerebellar hypoplasia," she said.
“This is a condition we see about once a year. It is caused either during pregnancy or by difficulty during labour – something sadly vets cannot help with when kittens are born outside. The degree of neurological damage varies and we will see how much it affects Peanut as she grows up”
Straight after being rescued, Peanut and her family settled in with her foster carer Sue Greenwood who’s been watching the tiny kitten grow stronger by the day.
But both Peanut and her family are now searching for a permanent home.
Ms Greenwood said: “Although Peanut has a neurological problem, she’s keeping up with her siblings. She is feeding well and weighs the same as her two brothers. She’s started to explore her surroundings and although she’s a bit more wobbly than the others, she has the same energy and taste for adventure.
“Although her head generally tilts to the right, she can hold it straight when she stands up. It was tough to watch her struggle at first but Peanut is the furthest thing from unhappy; she doesn’t know any different and is always full of joy.”
Yorkshire Cat Rescue are determined to find the right home for Peanut, who is at risk of developing further complications;
Ms Davies said: “Kittens who suffer from neurological difficulties are at greater risk of developing epilepsy as they develop through kittenhood. But we are determined to give Peanut every chance of a good life – however long that may be. For now, she is doing really well and we are hoping that she beats the odds. It does happen, so why not for her?”
“If she makes it through these challenging first few months, she’ll learn to compensate for her disability, absorb the world around her and make a very special family pet.”
Peanut will probably need to be a strictly indoor-only cat.
“Cerebellar hypoplasia will affect her coordination and balance throughout her life. She won’t be able to escape danger for example,” Ms Davies added. “This kitten is very lucky to have been found; she may not have survived without special care, and definitely not as a feral cat."
To view Peanut and her family, and other cats looking for adoption, visit, www.facebook.com/groups/catslookingforhomesatYorkshireCatRescue/