The natural world can be a cruel and harsh place where often only the strongest survive. Evolutionary scientists would point to natural selection, but, nevertheless, there is a strong argument for the survival of the cutest! More evidence of this phenomena is pictured here. This adorable furbaby may have been rejected by her mother in the late summer of 2017, but she attracted a human dad. But would the feeble feline be strong enough to flourish?
On August 20, 2017, social media user Alan – who goes by alanzgweb online – added an album to his imgur account. The images he posted on the picture sharing site featured a tiny calico kitten that looked painfully frail. And there was good reason for that, apparently the unfortunate little feline was the runt of her litter.
When a mammalian animal delivers a litter of babies, the newborns come in a range of sizes. As a result, some may be smaller and lighter than average, and others dangerously so. Consequently, these “runts” can struggle to get the nourishment their brothers and sisters do in the scrabble for their mother’s milk. Moreover, these smallest siblings can often suffer from adverse health conditions.
So sadly, a moggie mother may reject the runt of the litter if she has too many kittens. The mom concentrates her attention on those babies she is more confident of being able to survive. As a result of this natural instinct, Alan’s kitten had been neglected and become scrawny and weak. So much so, in fact, that many people who viewed Alan’s initial online picture posts of his new 30-day-old pet expressed their concern. One commented, “I’m pretty sure she shouldn’t have been taken from her mother yet, If I were you I’d take her to a vet to be sure about it.”
Another imgur follower was more blunt, writing, “Where is the mother? Kittens Need to be socialized, etc. Whats up? Alan explained to his followers that he had obtained the kitten from a student who could no longer keep the litter. Not only that, but at her tender age of 30 days, the tiny baby had experienced rejection. “Her mother [had] too many kittens, and [doesn’t] like her [as much] as [the] others,” Alan said in the comments.
But the imgur user must have fallen in love with the little animal instantly, and the name he subsequently gave his new pet may yield a clue as to what first captivated him. Alan likened the kitten to the character Sansa Stark from HBO’s Game of Thrones, played by English actress Sophie Turner. Because of the little one’s big blue eyes, he named her Sansa. Alan explained, “I was impressed… when Sansa [was] crying with big blue eyes… The cat also has blue eyes, so she is Sansa.”
And what’s more, since Sansa is a calico cat, she is blessed with patches of ginger fur to match her namesake’s fiery hair. Unlike the royal character in Game of Thrones, however, the kitten looked terribly scruffy and woebegone in the earlier photos her owner put up. Alan justified her appearance by saying that Sansa was just too young to bathe.
Despite this judgement, whether or not Alan had any previous experience looking after cats is unknown. Regardless, Sansa’s new human dad did his best to provide for her in the early days. He kept the kitten warm, gave her a roof over her head, and – perhaps most importantly – fed her with love as well as food.
But Alan was perhaps not the most forward-thinking daddy on day one. “Frankly speaking, I didn’t prepare all the things she needed,” he admitted. However, Alan quickly learned from his mistakes, and made sure that Sansa was properly provided for after he knew better. Furthermore, he and tiny Sansa had a lot of support from his online followers.
Many social media users rallied around the pair to give their pet guidance. They offered Alan advice on how to take care of Sansa, and where dad could go if he needed any assistance. No doubt Alan found the imgur followers’ collective wisdom invaluable, and Sansa also picked up a few new fans in the process.
One commented, “Ahhh she’s adorable!!! Props to you for taking care of her, I heard young ones are a lot of work!” But even with Sansa’s adoring public, the kitten only had eyes for her new dad. Indeed, it seemed from the pictures that Alan was everything to Sansa as she steadily grew. The calico kitty appeared to be most comfortable in those shots where she sat between his feet, which just emphasized how tiny she was.
Alan discovered early on that Sansa was very keen on eggs. This was fortunate because it made a good job of filling her up while he waited for the kitten formula to arrive. With nourishing food, the kitten started to grow much stronger, and began enjoying the finer things in life. Her daddy made sure that she had plenty of toys to play with.
Just like most domestic cats, and to the bemusement of most humans, Sansa found endless entertainment in her beloved cardboard cartons and boxes. In fact, the kitten had a fine selection of them scattered around what had become her very own room. And, as Sansa became healthier and more confident, she found a passion for exploration.
But Alan found out that life wasn’t all fluff and cuddles with Sansa – she was a growing kitty, after all. Usually, a kitten will play fight with their siblings, and it can get quite rough. Nonetheless, it is an important element in their developmental progress. However, without any brothers or sisters to wrestle around with, Sansa’s opponent was her daddy’s hand.
Although roughhousing is an essential part of a kitten’s education, it can be a painful lesson for humans. If she carried on biting into adulthood, Sansa’s daddy would have to train her out of it. Alan told his imgur followers, “She [started] to bite me. Need a way to stop [her] from doing that.” However, there was one very noticeable change in the kitten that Alan had no control over.
Sansa’s beautiful blue eyes began to change color. They started to mature into an equally stunning yellow-green hue. In fact, all baby cats are born with blue eyes, because their irises have yet to develop. When the kittens grow, their bodies produce more melanin, which usually causes an eye color change as the cat matures.
Sometimes – if a kitten has a deficiency of melanin in its body – there can be exceptions, and it might keep its blue eyes. However, it was more than apparent that Sansa was not one of those examples and there was no lack of melanin in her body. Happily, other levels seemed to also be healthy, and she did not develop any issues because of her initial lack of nourishment as the runt of her litter.
When she was old enough, Alan gave Sansa her first bath. The kitten displayed a normal cat’s aversion to water and did not appreciate the experience one bit. “Ten minutes later, she recovered, being an a**hole again,” her dad wrote on imgur. And Sansa came back with a vengeance. As Alan described her thinking, “Ah, it’s master’s fingers, let me bite it to scare him.”
But Sansa must soon have forgiven all – Alan is her daddy, and his dedication to her wellbeing surely proves that he loves her. On December 1, 2017, Alan uploaded the latest batch of Sansa pictures. And it is truly amazing just how far the one-time runt of the litter has come in such a relatively short amount of time.
Indeed, Sansa has grown from a dangerously tiny, scrawny kitten into a beautiful, healthy cat. She barely looks like the same animal now, and it is all thanks to the kindness of a human stranger. For this, Alan should be warmly applauded. Sansa’s story just goes to show that sometimes the most beautiful gifts come in the smallest of packaging.