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The 12 Cats of Christmas: Sheldon, the Brave Kitty Who’s Battling Manx Syndrome

As part of our year-end recap, we visit the cat who manages his condition with acupuncture and stars in a video game called "The Purring Quest."

Phillip Mlynar  |  Dec 23rd 2014


The year is coming to a close, so what better time to take a minute to look back on the most adorable, heartwarming and sometimes heartbreaking cats of the year? That’s exactly what we’ll be doing with the 12 Cats of Christmas. In the second place spot is a special needs kitty with a huge heart.

2. Sheldon

Of all the thousands of cats we’ve covered on Catster this year, Sheldon has the sweetest face of all. This three-year-old ginger tabby’s backstory involves him being born with the dual hindrance of water on the brain and Manx Syndrome, but one look at his innocent and loving gaze lets you know that he’s blessed with a beautiful soul.

When we first checked in with the Michigan-based Sheldon back in September, we discovered that regular acupuncture sessions help alleviate his pain. It seems that a regime of appointments is still a key part of soothing his condition; his Facebook page details links to a website where you can donate to fund his acupuncture, and Sheldon calendars for 2015 are also available to buy as a way to support his treatment.

Beyond his medical travails, Sheldon’s been revealing more about his personality via his Facebook page. We recently discovered that he’s not exactly a fan of this season’s frosty conditions: “Yuck, mom says white stuff outside is back again. But it should be gone again tomorrow.”

Showing his sharing, caring side, Sheldon has been active in promoting the cause of Pumpkin, another cat who needs medical attention (and who was also the subject of a recent Monday Miracle profile on Catster).

He’s also continued in his role as something of a kitty pillow for hire, with new foster kitten recruits at his home taking to lounging on his body whenever they feel an oncoming nap attack.

More unexpectedly, Sheldon is about to be honored as a character in an upcoming cat-themed video game. Titled The Purring Quest, the title will feature cameos from five Internet-active cats who entered a competition to co-star in the adventure. Sheldon was picked as one of the winners; recently released artwork shows how he’ll be rendered in the game. Of course, Sheldon’s trusty toy monkey is also included in the deal — and he wouldn’t have it any other way.

Enjoy the rest of the 12 Cats of Christmas on Catster:

About Phillip Mlynar: The self-appointed world’s foremost expert on rappers’ cats. When not penning posts on rap music, he can be found building DIY cat towers for his adopted domestic shorthair, Mimosa, and collecting Le Creuset cookware (in red). He has also invented cat sushi, but it’s not quite what you think it is.