At first glance, it might look like Kevin the Cat has just seen a ghost. With wide, green eyes that are ever-so-slightly crossed, the handsome four-year-old Russian Blue looks perpetually surprised, his adorable face permanently poised as though he’s just stumbled upon a hidden cache of catnip and treats.
Kevin’s unusual look is the result of hydrocephalus, which literally means “water on the brain.” The condition causes the abnormal dilation of the ventricular system because of excess spinal fluid. According to Kevin’s human, Tailah Moyle, the cat’s condition affects his vision, hearing, and balance — but he doesn’t let that slow him down.
Despite the challenges he faces, Kevin approaches the world with curiosity and tenacity — “He doesn’t stop playing,” Moyle says. Here are five ways to face each day with the same sense of wonder Kevin constantly expresses on his Instagram-famous face.
1. Play by your own rules
When it comes to being a kitty, Kevin has his own way of doing things. While most cats love to run, jump, and fight, Kevin attacks life with a more gentle approach — including his purr, which is so quiet that you’ll miss it if you’re not listening very, very carefully. Additionally, he can’t jump higher than the couch, and he can’t move his top eyelids — but if you ask Moyle, these eccentricities only make him more special.
“Kevin’s personality is almost completely inexplicable,” she says. “He is unique in every way possible. Everything you know about cats just doesn’t apply to Kevin.”
2. Ignore the haters
Because Kevin looks a little different than the average feline, most people don’t know how to react the first time they see him, and many people will straight-up ask whether something is wrong with his face. This doesn’t bother Moyle, though — her favorite “mum joke” is that Kevin can’t hear when people laugh at him anyway, so it’s easy for him to shrug off the haters.
“How can you not love Kevin’s face?” she says. “It never stops being funny when people meet Kevin and they don’t expect what they see. Everyone’s first reaction is always a big jaw drop while they try to think of something nice to say.”
3. Never give up
When Moyle adopted Kevin, vets didn’t expect him to live longer than six months. Four years later, Kevin has exceeded everyone’s expectations, using his amazing sense of smell to overcome his disability and make the most of every day.
“Kevin adapts so well to everything,” Moyle says. “His sense of smell is absolutely incredible, and as a kitten, he wasn’t able to see his food so would peck quite hard at the floor and his bowl until he found it. This was worrying to see, but now he eats totally normal.”
4. Take time to unwind
It’s easy to see that the camera loves Kevin, and with more than 26,000 followers, the kitty is a rising Instagram star. Still, the famous feline knows the value of a good nap, taking time every day to relax in what Moyle calls his “man cave.”
“We have enclosed the front balcony and installed a cat door so he can go ‘outside,'” she says. “He has a cubby house, fake grass, toys, and a sandpit. He also has access to the courtyard so he can play in the garden, and because he can’t jump, he can’t escape.”
5. Give back what you get
Like most special-needs kitties, Kevin is very loving, and Moyle says every day with him is rewarding.
“Kevin is very independent when he chooses to be,” Moyle says. “Other times he likes to sleep as close to your face as he can get. Special needs kitties are amazing because they give back all the love they get.”
Can’t get enough of Kevin? Follow him on Instagram for more adorable photos like these.