It’s easy to do the right thing when you’re being watched, or when the world will know what you did.
It’s not so easy to do the right thing when no one will know if you simply walk away and leave the problem for someone else to fix.
When a man in Montreal found a litter of homeless kittens near his industrial worksite, he didn’t look around to see if anyone was looking. And he didn’t care.
He just did the right thing: He gathered them up and carried them to safety.
He certainly didn’t do it for fame or fortune. Nobody who rescues animals does so for any reason other than simply, it’s the right thing to do.
Only after he got the kittens to Chatons Orphelins Montréal, “COM”, a nearby cat shelter, did he take a close look at their paws…and he just couldn’t believe his eyes!
Amazingly, the big-hearted man discovered that two of the cats were considered “good luck charms.”
Why? What made those kittens different than every other cat?
Those two special kittens had extra toes on their front feet! This condition is known as “polydactyl” and can add as many as 8 toes on any given paw.
In olden days, sailors considered these cats with “mittens on their feet” as carriers of good luck.
Their extra toes also gave them better traction on slippery ships decks, so they were always welcomed on board ships as ratters and companions…and harbingers of luck.
Because of their prevalence on ships, these special kitties found their way around the world, as their kittens were traded from port to port.
Some became famous. A ship’s captain gifted Earnest Hemingway with a white polydactyl cat that became the grand dame of his legendary collection of many-toed cats.
One, named Slippers, even went to the White House with President Theodore Roosevelt.
These homeless Canadian kitties might not get famous (though they’re burning it up online right now), but they’re certainly thankful for one Good Samaritan.
Muslie and Alpha, the polydactyl pair and the rest of their siblings were only 7 weeks old when they were taken to COM.
“The gentleman managed to catch six kittens. One of them was immediately adopted by a family.
The guy knew that the other five needed help, so he brought them to us,” Celine Crom of COM told Love Meow.
“There are 2 females and 3 males: Chaplin (black, male), Vinny (tiger, male), Muslie (grey, female), Alpha (grey, male), and Zia (grey, female).”
To be sure that the kittens were completely healthy and happy before they were put up for adoption, they were first placed in a foster home for a while.
From the shelter, the five cats were placed in a foster home, where they began to thrive and grow into young cats, each developing their own personalities.
“The 5 little cabbages have been pampered […] with Isabelle and Jean-Francois to continue their weaning and socialization,” COM posted to Facebook.
Crom told Love Meow that Muslie has developed into a talented hunter and caretaker for her siblings, while Alpha is more interested in snuggling.
“Alpha the bear is very calm and sweet. He enjoys the company of older cats,” Crom said.
“Muslie the sister is curious and playful. When she catches a feather toy, she takes it with her and hides it under the bed.”
Because of the fanfare of some of the litter having extra toes, it didn’t take long before their foster parents were saying goodbye to them.
From a garbage dump to happy loving homes is one of those happy ending stories we love to hear about!
Sadly, it’s not a story that describes most of the cats and kittens that end up in shelters.
There simply aren’t enough responsible homes for them all.
So please, if you’re looking for a new pet, check out your local shelter and see what “good luck charm” is waiting there for you!