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Imagine if your life was suddenly uprooted and you found yourself in a bustling shelter. You’d certainly be stressed and not very sociable. It’s the same for our feline friends. Except for the most outgoing cats, they’re always scared and not showing their true personalities. That’s why what you see in a shelter is not a true reflection of their potential in a calm and loving home environment. Not at all.

Sometimes, cats can remain shy for years in a shelter and get passed by for adoption. But get them home and their inner kitten comes out! And if you aren’t certain, you might consider fostering them in the meantime. That’s what happened with a kitten name ‘Jax with a Twist’ from Irvine, California.

Jax Was Acting ‘Mean’ But Was Only Scared

In the always-crowded shelter, Jax was on high alert and ready to go into attack mode. He also had a slightly nipped ear that led the staff to think he was a feral cat caught through TNR (trap, neuter, return). While getting spayed or neutered, the cats are ear-tipped to mark them as previously caught.

However, if you look closely, it seems Jax’s ear was only slightly nicked. Possibly, he got into a scuffle with another kitty? And his tail was twisted, possibly since birth, according to the veterinarian’s assessment.

Jax With A Twist, Huge, Orange County, California, Lacy Fortier, OC Realtor, Marcus D. Shelby, feral shelter cat, cat labeled mean snuggled with new adopted family overnight, 1

Images and media via Instagram/Jax With A Twist

Whatever his difficult background, Jax was understandably scared to death. Since staff are always hard-pressed for time, help, and resources, the shelter planned to return him to where he was caught outdoors. It was a much better alternative to euthanasia. But this kitty’s destiny was a loving home.

Jax With A Twist, Huge, Orange County, California, Lacy Fortier, OC Realtor, Marcus D. Shelby, feral shelter cat, cat labeled mean snuggled with new adopted family overnight, 5

This was Jax meeting his new pawrents for the first time.

Just when Jax had no hope for adoption, his humans arrived!

The couple had long been grieving a beloved kitty named Hugo, who was 17. Nine months later, they spotted Jax’s picture online. Despite some doubts, they decided to visit him. As staff carried him into the room, he was growly and stiff. You can see why they considered him feral.

Yet when he met Marcus, he quickly realized this was his person. He was like a puddle in his arms in five minutes. 

Jax With A Twist, Huge, Orange County, California, Lacy Fortier, OC Realtor, Marcus D. Shelby, feral shelter cat, cat labeled mean snuggled with new adopted family overnight, 4Marcus holds Jax in the shelter

“Embarking on a journey skeptically, we discovered Jax, a feral kitten resembling our cat Hugo, who passed 9 months ago.”

Jax With A Twist, Huge, Orange County, California, Lacy Fortier, OC Realtor, Marcus D. Shelby, feral shelter cat, cat labeled mean snuggled with new adopted family overnight, 7

Hugo via Instagram/Jax With A Twist

Considering how anxious the kitty was behaving, the couple started having doubts. But then, they decided for a ‘trial’ period of fostering. It turned out to be the best decision!

“Despite initial doubts, curiosity led us to a shelter where Jax, growling and scared, stole our hearts. Concerned about his temperament and broken tail, we hesitated, but a trial fostering period ensued. But as soon as we got him home, it was clear he belonged with us.”

Jax With A Twist, Huge, Orange County, California, Lacy Fortier, OC Realtor, Marcus D. Shelby, feral shelter cat, cat labeled mean snuggled with new adopted family overnight, 3

Lacy holding Jax

A Heaven Sent Angel

It took so little time for Jax to relax when he knew he was safe. And now the family knows he was always meant to join them.

“Despite a rough start, Jax became the sweetest companion. Every day with him feels like a blessing, and we can’t help but feel that he was meant to be with us. I’m convinced that my Grandma and Hugo orchestrated his arrival as a little angel sent to brighten our lives,” shared Jax With A Twist.

Video via Instagram/Jax With A Twist

‘Shelter to Snuggles’ Overnight!

Most cats take several months to feel fully at home. But despite being so scared at the shelter, Jax knew he was right where he was supposed to be. The morning after he arrived, he was an insatiable cuddle monster, snuggling up closely with Lacy in bed like he’d always been there.

Was this exceptional trust because Hugo and Grandma were coming through? We think so! And it was also absolutely due to all the love and security he felt at home with his new family.

 Huge, Orange County, California, Lacy Fortier, OC Realtor, Marcus D. Shelby, feral shelter cat, cat labeled mean snuggled with new adopted family overnight, 2

Morning snuggles with Lacy

Jax is Working Out the Kinks

Jax is thriving so much now that even the kink in his tail is improving. And the ongoing love fest is definitely heaven-sent for this family and fans online.

“Once he was home, you could see his tail start to come to life and it’s been all wagging and playfulness! 🐾 We think he just needed love to help bring his tail back to life. We’re amazed by his resilience and how happy he seems to be now. This whole experience has been so special 💞” they shared.

You can see more on Instagram at Jax With A Twist, and on TikTok.

 

 

 

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