A couple visits the animal shelter in search of a feline companion, only to be chosen by a cat with visual challenges.

Selecting a pet from a shelter can be a challenging decision, given the multitude of adorable animals awaiting adoption. Elliot and Nathaniel Green experienced this firsthand when they recently visited an animal shelter with the intention of adopting a cat. Participating in “Free Cat Fridays” at the Lynchburg Humane Society, their initial hope was to find a Siamese kitten, but the lone one available had already been reserved. Disheartened by the prospect of leaving empty-handed, their fortunes took an unexpected turn when a captivating blind cat expressed interest in them, ultimately choosing them as its new companions.


Elliot elaborates, “It was actually my colleague who persuaded me to participate. She recently adopted an adorable kitten from there. After perusing their cat adoption website, Nathaniel and I had our hearts set on a Siamese kitten.”

Merlin had been available for adoption for some time, seemingly overlooked, possibly due to his visual impairment. Nevertheless, he is just as stunning as any other cat in the shelter.


Shelter staff clarified that Merlin navigates his surroundings effortlessly, maintaining a calm demeanor and a love for cuddling. Unfortunately, upon the Greens bringing Merlin home, he experienced health issues, including frequent seizures that caused significant concern for his new parents, who were uncertain about the cause.

After conducting research, they discovered that Merlin was allergic to wheat. Transitioning to a wheat-free cat food proved to be the solution, and since then, Merlin has enjoyed robust health. With his distinctive and unique features, Merlin stands out as a special kitten, belonging to the rare mixed breed known as Napoleon—a cross between a Munchkin cat and a Persian cat.


The owner clarified, “Napoleons are notably small, yet they exhibit the agility of regular-sized cats. Primarily, they inherit the physical characteristics of Persians.”

The Greens expressed their immense joy upon discovering Merlin. Elliot shared, “He’s an affectionate cat who relishes recognition and cuddling. Moreover, he has never displayed any destructive or mischievous behavior.”


Born blind, Merlin lacked a concept of fear, leading him to attempt jumping from relatively high places. His fearlessness extended to his interactions with people; instead of hiding, he would eagerly run to the door to greet visitors and climb onto guests sitting on the couch. His preferred spot is perched on someone’s lap.


Merlin’s fondness for watermelon, a favorite of Elliot’s as well, has become a regular treat for both of them during the two-plus years he has lived with the Greens. The feline companion has seamlessly integrated into their lives, bringing joy and inspiration to the couple. Through Merlin, they have witnessed resilience, adaptability, and unwavering trust, serving as a poignant reminder of the strength and beauty that emerge from overcoming challenges.

This heartwarming narrative not only underscores the unconditional love and companionship that pets offer but also highlights the profound impact animals, even those with special needs, can have on our lives. The couple’s decision to open their hearts to this blind cat has led them on a distinctive and fulfilling journey of love, care, and mutual understanding.

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