Little cat, big spirit: Moki the Wobbly Cat touches hearts wherever he goes

Moki_The_Wobbly_Cat

This past weekend, I met a very special cat. I had first heard of Moki when he was on Animal Planet’s Must Love Cats, and the story of this little cat with severe neurological problems touched my heart then. I never thought I’d get to meet Moki in person. And I certainly didn’t expect to meet him at a pet blogging conference.

Moki’s human, Crystal Fogg, first met Moki at a shelter where she was volunteering in 2007. The almost feral kitten was about 3 months old, and needed to be socialized. Crystal agreed to foster him, but since she already had seven cats at the time, she had no intention of keeping him.

A few weeks later, Moki developed a severe upper respiratory condition. Despite intensive care at an emergency veterinary hospital, Moki continued to get worse. He eventually recovered, but the illness had left him with severe neurological damage. The doctors told Crystal that Moki would never be able to sit up, walk, or eat on his own again.

 Mokie_the_wobbly_cat

Crystal wasn’t willing to give up on Moki, and decided to take him home. Within days, Crystal had Moki sitting up and eating on his own, and with lots of hard work, she managed to get him walking. He doesn’t walk like a normal cat; he wobbles and falls over every few steps, but it was still more progress than anyone had expected.

Five years later, Moki has been through numerous tests at various specialty practices, including the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Nobody can identify the exact nature of the problem. Vets have yet to determine whether the virus that caused the upper respiratory condition may have caused his neurological problems, or even which virus it was.

But Moki is still going strong. He receives intense physical therapy and acupuncture several times a week. Crystal gives him subcutaneous fluids and Tamiflu (an antiviral drug) every day. His medical costs are ongoing, and they’re high. Crystal is a student, and does not have the means to provide this level of care on an ongoing basis, but this hasn’t deterred her from finding ways to get Moki the care he needs. In addition to private fundraisers, she received help from Scout’s Animal Rehab Therapy Fund, an organization that underwrites the cost of physical therapy with special needs. She now works for Scout’s Fund as their Social Media Director.

Thanks to Crystal’s unwavering dedication and love, this little cat has a chance at life – and in the process, he’s transforming the lives of everyone he meets.

At first glance, it is jarring to watch Moki try to walk and wobble and fall over. I’ll be honest, when I first saw Moki after Crystal put him on the grassy area in the hotel’s courtyard, I couldn’t help but wonder whether this cat is suffering. Even after listening to Crystal talk about his story, and watching the light in her eyes as she did, I still asked myself whether this was  a case of a cat guardian being unable to let go of a beloved cat. But once I connected with his huge spirit, there was no doubt in my mind that this little cat is not only happy, he’s a cat with a purpose.

Moki_the_Wobbly_Cat

With Crystal’s permission, I picked Moki up to hold him. I have no words for the rush of emotion I felt as I cuddled this little cat to me. The energy coming off Moki was absolutely amazing. It was impossible to not be touched by his spirit. There were several other people with me, and as we passed Moki around, I could tell that everyone else felt something similar. Faces softened. Smiles got brighter. The energy around our little group practically radiated with love.

With Crystal’s help, Moki has become a spokes cat for special needs animals, with a particular emphasis on using complimentary and alternative forms of veterinary medicine. You can learn more about Moki on his website or on his Facebook page.

All photos © Ingrid King

Mews and Nips will return next week.

24 Comments on Little cat, big spirit: Moki the Wobbly Cat touches hearts wherever he goes

  1. mary knight
    August 30, 2012 at 9:31 am (5 years ago)

    Just viewed this and also one of the other video links. I second the comments above. One just wants to hold Moki, he is so cute. And you held him very gently in the photograph Ingrid. Here’s to a good life for Moki.

    Reply
  2. Chris Davis
    June 30, 2012 at 7:09 pm (5 years ago)

    Oh, Ingrid, thank you so much for sharing Moki’s story – what a special little angel!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      July 1, 2012 at 12:14 pm (5 years ago)

      He sure is, Chris.

      Reply
  3. Layla Morgan Wilde
    June 30, 2012 at 6:54 pm (5 years ago)

    Ingrid, I loved seeing all the photos of Moki from BlogPaws and now reading about his story made it come alive. Moki is the perfect spokecat for cats with special needs!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      July 1, 2012 at 12:14 pm (5 years ago)

      Maybe you’ll get a chance to meet him “in purrson” next year, Layla.

      Reply
  4. Bopeeps
    June 30, 2012 at 5:10 pm (5 years ago)

    What a sweetie. Thanks for sharing Ingrid.

    Reply
  5. Moki The Wobbly Cat
    June 30, 2012 at 4:26 pm (5 years ago)

    Thank you so very much Ingrid and The Conscious Cat for sharing my story. You did an amazing job telling it. It was a pleasure meeting you and I am so very happy that you got a chance to meet Moki and experience his love of life for yourself. Moki loved all the hugs and snuggles and says he can’t wait until next year when he can get some more! 🙂

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm (5 years ago)

      I’m so glad you liked my post, Moki (and Crystal). I can’t wait until next year!

      Reply
      • Moki The Wobbly Cat
        June 30, 2012 at 5:35 pm (5 years ago)

        We did indeed! We also just posted another picture of you and Moki on hid Facebook page. The picture was taken on the very last night of Blogpaws and is adorable…you are so photogenic! Luv, Moki and Mom C.

        Reply
        • Ingrid
          July 1, 2012 at 12:09 pm (5 years ago)

          I love that photo – and it’s Moki who’s photogenic!

          Reply
  6. Savannah NanaMo
    June 30, 2012 at 4:25 pm (5 years ago)

    I get the part about Moki having a huge spirit which others find infectious…but as one cat to another, I would still ask Moki…are you really comfy, without pain, and living your full life…or are you tired and weary of submitting to so many treatments…no judgments…just questions and concern for a cat and his soul…paw pats for Moki

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 5:04 pm (5 years ago)

      I felt that way before I connected with Moki’s spirit, Savannah. Once I made that connection, there was no doubt in my mind that this is a happy cat.

      Reply
  7. Ryker's Boyz 'n' Allie
    June 30, 2012 at 3:26 pm (5 years ago)

    I would have loved to meet him! At first, I too wondered…thanks so much for sharing what it felt like to hold Moki.

    We’ve had a few cats with Cerebellar Hypoplaisa at the shelter, and they hold a special place in my heart. We have one now who is up for adoption whom I am especially fond of because she is also completely deaf, like my Max was when we adopted him.

    Her situation mirrors Moki’s in that it isn’t CP that caused it, but something mysterious, perhaps a high fever when a kitten. We’ll never know. Hoping for a very special forever home for her….

    Thanks again for sharing Moki’s story!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 5:05 pm (5 years ago)

      I hope your special kitty finds a very special home, Lisa.

      Reply
  8. Caren Gittleman
    June 30, 2012 at 2:28 pm (5 years ago)

    I am so happy that you shared the story of Moki with us. Since I wasn’t able to attend BlogPaws I didn’t get to meet him. I am thrilled to have read his story here. What a determined little guy!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 5:06 pm (5 years ago)

      I’m glad you got to “meet” Moki through my post, Caren.

      Reply
  9. Faith Geisel
    June 30, 2012 at 1:14 pm (5 years ago)

    I volunteer at a cat shelter, and recently we took in a cat similar to Moki, who not only has severe neurological issues but also is missing a rear leg. He somehow manages with his handicaps, and has such a joy of life which he shares with everyone he meets. It truly is a blessing to know such individuals.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 1:17 pm (5 years ago)

      The kitty at your shelter sounds like a wonderful cat, Faith. The joy these special cats emanate is quite amazing, isn’t it?

      Reply
  10. Julia Williams
    June 30, 2012 at 12:26 pm (5 years ago)

    What a wonderful post! Moki truly is an inspiration, and so is his guardian.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 1:54 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks, Julia.

      Reply
  11. Deb Barnes - Zee and
    June 30, 2012 at 10:08 am (5 years ago)

    What an inspirational story. I am sorry I did not get to see him at BlogPaws, but through your words, I too can feel the energy of this special little cat who seems to have some of Buckley’s spirit…

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 1:53 pm (5 years ago)

      Oh, I thought you had had a chance to meet him, Deb. I’m glad you enjoyed meeting him through my words.

      Reply
  12. Marg
    June 30, 2012 at 8:40 am (5 years ago)

    Great story. Having a disable animal like Moki is so rewarding and the thing is, he doesn’t know he can’t do some things. Big thanks to Chrystal for taking such good care of Moki. Thanks for telling us about Moki.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      June 30, 2012 at 1:53 pm (5 years ago)

      That’s exactly right, Marg: Moki doesn’t know he’s different.

      Reply

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