Embracing Uniqueness: The Heartwarming Journey of Sansa, the Polydactyl Cat

In my opinion, it’s a wonderful thing to be different, and this applies to all creatures, including cats. Our differences are what make us special and unique. When a cat stands out from the rest, it truly shines. That’s exactly the case with Sansa. Despite being different, she is absolutely lovely. Her mesmerizing heterochromia eyes, her 21 adorable toes, and her glossy white coat make her look like a one-of-a-kind angelic kitty that you can’t help but admire. Unfortunately, Sansa’s previous family couldn’t appreciate her beauty and abandoned her. However, fate had something in store for her. A compassionate woman came across Sansa’s story, and without even laying eyes on her, she knew that she had to provide a forever home for this special feline. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Sansa the Polydactyl Cat—a true gem who deserves all the love and affection she receives.

Sansa, a unique feline with special needs, faces a common hesitation among potential adopters who are unsure about caring for cats like her. However, taking care of any cat requires responsibility and dedication, and this shouldn’t discourage individuals from considering a special needs cat. Sansa’s beautiful story, shared here through an interview with her owner, serves as a source of inspiration for others to embrace the opportunity to care for cats that require a little extra attention.

How did you come across Sansa?
I had the pleasure of meeting Sansa during an adoption event held at a Petco store in Manhattan in the summer of 2016. Interestingly, my husband and I had initially attended the event with the intention of meeting a different cat we had spotted on PetFinder. However, fate had a different plan for us that day. As we wandered around the venue, my gaze was suddenly captivated by an apparently empty cage. Hanging on the front of the cage was a handwritten note detailing the cat’s anxiety and heartbreak, having been abandoned by her previous family. Instantly, I felt an unexplainable connection to this mysterious feline. Eager to know more, I approached one of the volunteers and expressed my interest in the cat from the cage. Much to my surprise, the volunteer then carefully opened the cage, lifting the cat bed to reveal Sansa (previously known as Snow) hiding beneath it! My astonishment grew as I beheld Sansa’s striking all-white fur, her mismatched eyes, and the presence of extra toes on her paws. It was love at first sight.

What age was Sansa when she joined our family, and how old is she now? Sansa became a part of our lives at the tender age of 1.5 years. Presently, she has blossomed into a 5-year-old beauty, eagerly awaiting her upcoming 6th birthday on December 1st. It’s important to note that since she arrived without any official documentation, we’re estimating her birthdate.

How would you describe her personality?
She embodies the perfect combination of sweetness, intelligence, and affection, with a playful side. For instance, to rouse us from sleep each morning, she playfully knocks items off our nightstand one by one, eagerly anticipating if we’ll wake up. If we remain oblivious, she continues to knock even more objects off! Additionally, she possesses a calm and gentle demeanor. However, she still experiences anxiety and becomes easily frightened by loud noises like fireworks, thunder, or unexpected dog barks. Consequently, she tends to retreat to corners to seek solace and hide.

How does her Feline Hyperesthesia (also known as Twitchy Cat Disease) impact her daily routines?

Her hyperesthesia used to be much more severe, significantly impacting her overall quality of life. Throughout the day, she would suddenly encounter episodes of “back rolling,” which in turn caused her to aggressively go after her own tail. These episodes would endure for over 5 minutes each time. However, thanks to the administration of hemp oil, her episodes are now effectively managed. Presently, she only experiences these episodes around 1-2 times a week, lasting for approximately 30 seconds each time. Whenever an episode arises, I attempt to redirect her attention with toys in order to dissuade her from attacking her tail, yet there is no foolproof way to completely prevent the back rolling. Fortunately, her episodes are now relatively mild, resulting in minimal disruption to her daily life.

1. What is the total number of toes that Miss Sansa has?
Miss Sansa possesses a grand total of 21 toes! She has 6 toes on each front paw, 5 toes on her left hind paw, and the typical 4 toes on her right hind paw.

2. Is there something distinctive about Miss Sansa that you’d like people to be aware of?
Miss Sansa had a difficult start in life, resulting in her being overcome with fear by the time she found herself at the shelter. It seemed unlikely that she would ever overcome her anxieties and develop into the affectionate lap cat she is today. However, she has proven everyone wrong, triumphing over numerous obstacles in recent years. It is my heartfelt wish for people to recognize that all cats, regardless of their shyness or anxiety, deserve a chance. Let us not overlook those “less adoptable” or special needs cats at the shelter because, with an abundance of patience and tender loving care, they are capable of showering immense love upon their human companions. I hope that Miss Sansa’s journey can inspire more individuals to offer these cats the opportunities they rightly deserve.

I want to express my gratitude to Karen for giving me permission to share Sansa’s story and pictures with all of you. Just like Karen, I hope that this tale can serve as inspiration for others to consider adopting cats that are often overlooked. These cats, despite being labeled as “less adoptable,” often have an abundance of love to offer and will reward you with an incredibly strong bond that can fill your heart. Make sure to follow Sansa’s daily cuteness on Instagram and witness her adorableness firsthand!

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