When Valerie first brought Bart home, she worried that her three other rescue cats – Max, Cecelia and Jack – would accept him. But as soon as she put the luggage rack in the living room and opened the door, Max stuck his head in and started grooming Beard before he even got out.
“I thought this was just the cutest thing, that was his welcome to the house,” she said. “It wasn’t even out of the porter and Max is in there. ‘Hey, who are you? Welcome – come out! ‘”
Bart, dubbed “The Miracle Cat” by the Humane Society in Tampa Bay, had no idea what to do with toys or how to play when he arrived. Valerie loved to watch him find ways to have fun.
“Now he’s perfect his game,” she said. “He loves all toys – although he is a joker at heart and loves to hide and jump out to scare the next cat that goes by or sit on a coffee table and hit it on the head as you go. He really is a character. “
Bart not only plays with the other cats, he also likes to make demands on beds – whether cat beds, human beds or a blanket on the floor. But his favorite thing is Boar’s Head Chicken.
“He’s doing amazing,” she said. “He’s definitely put on more weight than he probably should have, but he’s very, very hard to deny as you can imagine after everything he’s been through.”
Valerie is grateful to the Humane Society of Tampa Bay for funding Bart’s recovery and leading the lawsuit on top of his hefty medical bills. She noted that the Humane Society’s local animal shelters are independent of the national organization and rely on community donations and grants to keep their doors open. She hopes Bart’s story will inspire people to support their local animal shelter and the pets they save.
Of course, she is also grateful that Bart’s incredible will to live has brought him into her life.
“He has the best personality by far. He’s the first to go to the door and greet everyone who comes through that door, ”she said. “He’s just always a happy beard. He’s just the coolest cat – he really is. He’s a happy boy. “