MoetI’d been in my forever home for about 4 months and I was very happy there. My mum loved me a lot, I had every luxury and even my princess sisfur (Luna) had come to accept me and even play with me a bit. We used to play chase around the apartment and although she was a bit rough at times, I loved the company and the madness.

My mum had a balcony but we weren’t allowed on it for ages. I didn’t really know about it, but Luna used to look longingly through the patio doors at the ‘outside’. It got to winter (when it’s cool enough in Oman to go out) and mum decided to put up a 6ft wire fence on the balcony to make it safe enough for us to go out. Mum is on the 5th floor and there is a drop down to the 1st floor quad, so she needed to make sure we wouldn’t go over the edge.

Once I tasted the ‘outside’ I loved it. I’d spend ages (under the watchful eye of mum) sunning myself, listening to all the noises, the birds people occasionally walking around other corridors and I even had a stool to sit on to feel the breeze. It was magic.

After we’d had the balcony available to us for about a month and mum was comfortable that it was safe, she’d leave the patio doors open overnight for us to go out and get some fresh cool night air. Some nights I even slept out there for a while. I also learned that if I sat on the balcony when it was time for mum to come home from work, I’d hear her walking down the corridor and could rush to the front door to meet her. Ahhh… bliss.

One night mum went to bed and fell asleep. We usually came onto the bed during the night but she woke up around 2am and we weren’t there. Luna had appeared by the morning but I hadn’t. The rest of the story is going to be told by mum.

Moet’s mum:

I remember going to bed that night as usual and Luna appeared immediately for her bedtime cuddle then went off. I heard the girls doing their usual tearing round the apartment and I fell gradually asleep. I woke up around 2am and noticed, oddly, that neither of the girls was on the bed as they typically would be. I thought it was a bit odd, but not completely unheard of, so I went back to sleep. I woke up at 6am as usual and Luna appeared for her food, but Moet didn’t. I was at first baffled, then worried. I looked in cupboards, hiding places, everywhere. No Moet. A voice told me to look out of the window. No, surely a 6ft would be too high for her to climb? I was wrong.

Panic. I looked out of the window and there, at the bottom of the quad was my little Moet, crouched in a corner. My mind was awash with fear, disbelief and anger. I can’t describe it. I called her name and saw a response. I fled out of the door in my pyjamas, rushed down and went to her. She responded to me but didn’t move. I didn’t want to leave her now I was there, so gingerly I put my hands underneath her body and started to lift gently. She didn’t flinch or meow, so I knew it was probably OK to carry her. I went back up to the apartment, put her down on the mat inside the door and she gingerly moved then lay down again.

I dialled the emergency vet number, told them I’d be there in 15 minutes and explained briefly the seriousness of it. I was too numb to cry but I was a total wreck, filled with self-anger and fear. How could I have been so stupid?!

I live 15 minutes’ drive from the vets but I got dressed and got there in 15 minutes flat. In fact I got there before the vet did. They checked her over and ascertained that, amazingly, nothing seemed broken. But they kept her in for the day for x-rays and few meds. At the end of the day they called to tell me I could come and collect her. I was delighted. Was that really it? All OK? No, not totally OK, the vets told me she wasn’t eating and needed to be force fed with a syringe, but they felt she’d do better at home with mum.

It was during that time that there was a great deal of torment and playing out of scenarios of what had happened. On the one hand I was so glad I didn’t see it happen. On the other, could I have spared her a lonely, painful and scary night alone by checking for her when I got up at 2am? Yes, probably. I figured out that it was probably during a chase by Luna that she’d scaled the fence. They used to climb up the furniture and over things in a frenzy during those chases. Luna had probably chased her onto the balcony, Moet climbed up the fence, carried on climbing to the top and… well, she just wouldn’t know what awaited her on the other side. It was heart-breaking. I totally blamed myself (and still do).

So, I got her home and she seemed somewhat listless. I tried a force-feed that evening and she fought so hard I gave up after half a syringe. She had some water and then we slept. The next morning she had gone downhill. She was sneaking off to hide under the bed and now wouldn’t even drink anything. I knew things weren’t right – it became clear she was giving up.

After an unpleasant blood test they found she was severely anaemic and guessed she must have internal bleeding. They began a pin cushion exercise of pushing needles into various parts of her body to find out where. Finally, they found it – the haemothorax. She was bleeding badly into her chest cavity.

Being blind, she could not have anticipated the landing, even though she righted herself. On the plus side, she didn’t have the broken limbs one might expect after that kind of fall. On the down-side, she’d landed on her chest.

They immediately admitted her and gave her injections for blood clotting and haemoglobin. And there began a long and agonising two week journey. However, after their wonderful care, lots of TLC and visits, she pulled through. The vets said that she perked up every time I went in and called her name (which is when I first started calling her ‘Mo-Mo’, which has stuck). Because of her response to my voice, I knew I had to check in every other day, no matter how busy or late I was. I was grief-stricken even at the thought of losing her. I’d grown so fond of her over the 4 short months I’d had her; I needed and wanted her to live so desperately!

Once I got her home she was stable, but it wasn’t plain sailing in those early weeks. We had a small relapse and discovered she’d developed immune-mediated anaemia a couple of weeks after she came home; I noticed she was again not herself and acted quickly. Luckily we managed to get her though that with meds and a few more vet visits. Since then she’s been 100% my Mo-Mo.

Moet on the balconyFor those of you wondering, that balcony is now totally fenced-in (all 12ft right up to the ceiling) and it is finally a fun and totally safe area for the girls to play and relax and survey their world. They all love it and Moet does not seem to recall the fall and associate any negativity with her outdoor world.

Moet in her treeAlmost a year on from the fall she is such a vibrant, talkative, playful and incredibly happy girl. She is the light of my life and every day she makes me remember how lucky I am to have her. She is such a survivor!

You can follow Moet on Twitter: @MoetBlindCat

And on Facebook:

You can also follow Moet and her sisters (Luna and Lily) on Instagram: @3Muscats


In the Middle of a World...

"In the middle of a world that has always been a bit mad, the cat walks with confidence."

Roseanne Anderson