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Blind cat leads normal life, but probably shouldn’t go outside

Here are some excerpts from a feel-good story from the Dallas Morning News. Cat with no eyes still hunts, gets around house [F]ive years ago,...

Dr. Eric Barchas  |  Feb 12th 2008


Here are some excerpts from a feel-good story from the Dallas Morning News.

Cat with no eyes still hunts, gets around house

[F]ive years ago, in the street that goes in front of her new home, Daisy was hit by a car whose driver didn’t stop. She was found lying partially on the curb and in the gutter with severe head injuries.

Thanks to Daisy’s dedicated parents, she survived. Daisy spent 17 days in the hospital, and both of her eyes had to be removed. The article goes on to describe the very normal nature of Daisy’s current life.

This is no surprise to me. I have known many blind cats and dogs. Lack of vision did not have much of an impact on the quality of their lives.

Consider this. Most people would say that they use vision more than smell, touch, sound, or taste to navigate and understand their world. Yet humans who cannot see lead fulfilling, rich lives.

Most cats and dogs would say (if they could talk) that smell is their number one way of exploring the world. So it makes perfect sense that a blind cat would be able to adapt.

One part of the article, however, did bother me just a bit.

“One Mother’s Day about three years ago, I opened the door and she was standing there with a dead bird in her mouth that she had caught,” [Daisy’s mom] said.

Daisy has been seen stalking other birds, one of which she caught, and at other times has been witnessed running in hot pursuit of squirrels.

I am going to avoid a discussion on the ethics of letting cats kill birds for now, but I am troubled nonetheless. Based on this part of the story, it appears that Daisy is still going outside! I’m not sure that’s a good idea. After all, isn’t that how she got hit by a car in the first place?