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This Rescued Cat Completely Changed Color Due To Rare Health Condition


This rescued cat completely changed color due to rare health condition

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Did you know that cats are the most popular pet across America? That’s right; it seems as though many of us can’t help but relax and unwind with our feline friends, and it looks as though there might be a good reason. Not only did one cat once run for the mayor of Mexico City, but Mayor Stubbs was the mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska for 20 years before the feline passed away in 2017. That’s not all. It seems as though many of us might have an inner cat as they can sleep for up to 70% of the day. That sounds about right. Many believe that pet cats have been a part of our lives since way back in 3600 BCE, but one rescued cat was about to blow her owner’s mind. It turns out that some cats can totally change color due to a rare health condition.

A sudden change

Many of us have enjoyed spending time with pet cats over the years. Sometimes, they can grow to become a massive part of our lives, especially as we get to learn all the quirks and fun of their personalities. Who doesn’t love to hear their cat running around the house at night?

A sudden change

However, it looks as though some of our feline friends have grown to make more of an impact on our lives than we ever believed. While this woman thought she was welcoming a black cat, it wasn’t long before she got to sit back and watch as her new friend changed color in front of her very eyes.

Discovering the pair

Nicole Böhm first met her new feline friends back in 2016. Unfortunately, it looked as though they needed a helping hand. Nicole discovered two kittens who looked as though they had been abandoned on a dirty farm in Germany. She couldn’t walk past and leave them to fend for themselves, so Nicole packed them up and took them back to her house. Many cats often run away to a secluded area to have their kittens.

Discovering the pair

There was every chance this pair may have never been discovered. Nicole soon learned the cats were identical sisters, and she promptly named one of them Elli. The best bit was the sisters had matching tuxedo coats. It wasn’t long before the new additions became a significant part of Nicole’s home, and it looked as though she was loving every minute. That was until everything changed in front of her very eyes.

Learning the truth

Elli had a black coat with white paws, a white chest, and some white on her nose, and looked just like many other cats all around the world. However, that was all about to be a distant memory. It took just one year before Elli looked like an entirely new cat, but what had happened to her fur? It all started when Nicole noticed a small white patch on her cat’s back.

Learning the truth

The owner took a closer look but had no idea what it could be. It was unlike anything Nicole had ever seen, and she wanted to make sure her cat was safe. Nicole soon decided that she wanted to get a second opinion on the sudden change in color so booked Elli in for an appointment with the vet for a checkup. It was only then that Nicole learned the amazing truth behind those few white hairs.

Getting the diagnosis

She was no longer just a typical cat. In fact, it didn’t take long for the vet to diagnose Elli with vitiligo. This meant the cat could be about to change color entirely. The condition meant the small white spot on Elli’s back could be about to spread over her entire body if the condition spread enough to remove the pigment from all of her fur.

Getting the diagnosis

It could spread quick enough that Nicole could see her cat change color with every day that passed. Although she had rescued two black cats, it looked as though Nicole could be about to enjoy some variety in her home. She had no idea that this could ever happen, but it didn’t take long for the full effects of the vitiligo to take effect.

Taking control

Vitiligo is a condition that can affect humans as well as many animals. It’s believed that around 1 – 2% of people all around the world can develop the condition, with it being just as rare in animals. Anything from giraffes to penguins and cougars to owls can be affected by the condition – including our pets. That’s right; there is a chance that our dogs and cats may develop vitiligo.

Taking control

The condition usually develops at a young age, and typically starts around the nose, eyes, or mouth before spreading to the paws. This might be all that is affected. However, vitiligo can continue to spread to the rest of the body before owners are left with an almost entirely white pet. As if that wasn’t enough, it can sometimes take complete control of your animal in as little as three months.

More at risk

Some breeds of dog are more likely to develop the condition than others. It’s thought that German Shepherds, golden retrievers, rottweilers, and dachshunds are just some of the many that are at greater risk.

More at risk

All types of cats also stand a chance of developing vitiligo, but it’s still a relatively unknown condition. Nicole was amazed to hear that Elli was about to undergo such a major change, and had no idea what she could ultimately look like.

Keeping things safe

Believe it or not, but there are many types of vitiligo with some being caused by stress. However, another reason for the change can be down to the immune system as it attacks the melanocytes that produce the color in our pets’ fur.

Keeping things safe

The immune system can sometimes think they are a foreign body and work to destroy them all in a bid to keep safe. The reality? It’s merely removing any color from the fur – and it looked as though this was what was happening to Elli.

Living full lives

There is currently no treatment for vitiligo. Many vets will often test to see if there is any underlying reason their fur is changing color. If there is nothing to worry about, then there is usually no reason to panic if your pet develops the condition.

Living full lives

Vitiligo doesn’t typically cause any discomfort meaning most pets go on to live happy and healthy lives. Nicole was careful to watch out for any warning signs of anything sinister, but all she saw was Elli’s fur changing by the day.

Documenting her story

It wasn’t long before Nicole set up a social media page for Elli so she could document her entire story for the world to see. Not only could she sit back and watch as Elli totally transformed, but now everyone else could see it, too.

Documenting her story

The black was rapidly disappearing leaving an entirely new coat in its wake. It didn’t take long before some noticeable differences began to emerge. It looked as though Nicole was going to have to get used to looking at an entirely new face.

Stranger still

What had all started as one small speck on Elli’s body had soon taken over her entire coat. There were now several white patches that had appeared over her whole body, but things were about to get even stranger still.

Stranger still

Nicole learned the condition is usually hereditary. She sat back and waited for Elli’s sister to start to change color. However, it looked as though she was destined to keep her tuxedo coat instead. It was just Elli that was causing such a commotion.

Not holding back

Nicole is still learning how to cope with Elli’s diagnosis. In fact, during an interview with The Dodo, Nicole admitted that “I was surprised. I’m still surprised.” It took a lot of getting used to as Nicole never knew the color of the cat that would greet her at the door.

Not holding back

However, that didn’t stop her from loving her feline friend any less. The best bit? Elli never let the change in her coat get her down. She still goes about her typical cat life as it looks as though nothing can stand in her way.

Eternal reminders

It looks as though Elli has finally stopped changing color – almost three years after she was first rescued. Although she was once nearly entirely black, Elli has now been left with subtle black marks around her eyes as well as small black tips on her ears.

Eternal reminders

As if that wasn’t enough, the cat also has flecks of black fur dotted throughout her new white coat as a reminder of her former self. Now, it almost appears as though she is made from marble instead.

Spreading awareness

Elli’s social media presence has done more than just show off her changing coat. It seems as though it has helped to highlight the condition for many people all around the world. In fact, many have come forward to thank Nicole for spreading awareness.

Spreading awareness

It turns out that not many people have ever seen a cat with vitiligo – or knew they could develop the condition. Elli has opened many people’s eyes to the incredible number of things that can be achieved by nature.

Giving people hope

That’s not all. It turns out that Elli’s story has also given hope to many people living with vitiligo. Although the condition is relatively rare, it can soon consume someone’s life. Animals like Elli help to make vitiligo more relatable and approachable.

Giving people hope

Plus, seeing Elli with the condition has been able to help many others accept their uniqueness rather than try to hide. Thankfully, Elli’s laid-back attitude and love of life only help to make people feel more comfortable in their own skin.

Sharing the spotlight

It’s been a few years since Nicole first noticed the change and two years since Elli changed color. However, this cat hasn’t let anything stand in her way all that time it. It looks as though Elli may have finally stopped changing color.

Sharing the spotlight

However, Nicole is still keen to keep uploading snaps of her furry friend as she continues to spread awareness about the condition. Plus, Elli can now share the spotlight with some other famous four-legged friends living with vitiligo.

Subtle signs

Rowdy the black labrador was once one of the leading faces of vitiligo. In fact, he often took to social media to share his story and spread awareness for Vitiligo Awareness Month in June. Although he was born with all-black fur, Rowdy soon started to change.

Subtle signs

His owner noticed small white marks were forming around his eyes. It wasn’t long before they continued to grow until his face was covered by the new addition. It made for quite the talking point.

Passing the responsibility

It wasn’t long before Rowdy’s popularity and internet presence saw him become one of the leading faces of many vitiligo charities. Not only was he helping to get people talking about the condition, but Rowdy was also a mascot for many children.

Passing the responsibility

In fact, Rowdy even got to meet several of his fans all living with vitiligo in his years. Tragically, he passed away in 2017. However, it seems as though Rowdy might have passed the baton over to Elli to continue to get people talking about vitiligo.

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