Van Gogh is a handsome ginger boy who's filled with love. "He greets me at the top of the stairs every morning," his foster mom through The Feline Foundation of Greater Washington, Kelly Cooper, tells HiHomer. "He grooms my hands, gives head butts, and will sit on my lap. He will eat anything, and while he eats he purrs. It's absolutely adorable."
What makes Van Gogh's capacity for joy and affection so remarkable is that he's managed to keep it intact, despite everything he's been through.
Van Gogh is only 2 or 3 years old, but this poor boy has seen enough bad breaks to fill nine whole lives.
By the time he landed in Loudon Animal Control last year, he'd already been in and out of at least 3 homes. According to the woman who adopted him from LAC (who's requested anonymity), the people in home number 3 would post pictures of themselves mistreating the sweet ginger to Facebook—holding him upside-down by one leg and other acts of cruelty.
She doesn't know how the kitty lost his ear, but suspects it was at the hands of his abusers. When he finally wound up at LAC, she adopted him and named him Van Gogh.
When she moved away a few months ago, however, she gave Van Gogh to her brother—who, after only a few days, gave him to someone else.
"We don't know how he got lost, but she suspects that her brother's friend didn't want him either and put him outside," says Lisa Cason of FFGW. "He spent the whole weekend outside in sub-zero weather before a kind couple took him in."
Yet Van Gogh's sweet and loving nature—which nothing could break—still shone through.
"They said the cat came right up to them," adds Lisa. "He let them pet him, and they had no problem getting him inside, or into a cat carrier to go to [the shelter] the next morning."
After arriving at FFGW and being screened for FIV and FeLV, Van Gogh was quickly placed in a loving foster home—and his life has already begun to improve dramatically.
"Van Gogh is learning that life is better on the rescued side!" enthuses foster mom Kelly Cooper. "He shows his appreciation with purrs, head butts, and nose kisses. Every day brings something new we can experience with him."
Van Gogh does carry a few traces of the bad times he's been through. "When my boys want to get rambunctious, Van Gogh cowers," observes Kelly. "He still prefers to not have a hand come over the top of his head to start petting him. But he is clearly resilient and gaining confidence daily.
"He is a beautiful cat who is teaching us that his previous circumstance won't define his destiny," she adds, "and he's greeting love, safety and the idea of his forever home with open arms."
Van Gogh does well with other cats and older children, and FFGW describes him as, "affectionate, eager to please, intelligent, even-tempered, and gentle."
The Feline Foundation of Greater Washington is currently screening adopters for Van Gogh within the state of Virginia only. If you think you might be the purrson who can make Van Gogh feel safe and loved forever, check out his adoption page and fill out an application.
Share this story with your furiends and help Van Gogh find his forever home!