When 65-year-old Joan Price checked into a hospice facility in November, she knew she wouldn’t be returning to her home, but she continued to pay her rent so her cat, Isis, would have a safe place to live.
Price contracted hepatitis through a blood transfusion 40 years ago and suffers from cirrhosis of the liver. She’s bedridden and unable to walk or stand without assistance — a difficult situation, yet her only concern was for Isis.
The manager of Price’s building in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, fed the feline and cleaned her litter box, but Isis, a 2-year-old black cat that Price had taken in, was alone. And with no friends or family nearby, Price worried that Isis would have no one to care for her.
“I was so worried. I cried every night,” Price told Vetstreet.com. “I don’t care about myself. I’m ready. But I care about making sure Isis will be OK.”
Price began contacting rescue groups to find a new home for Isis, but she wasn’t having any luck until Dorian Wagner, a Florida blogger who often helps local rescues find homes for cats, heard about Price’s predicament.
Wagner shared Price’s story with her Facebook community, and soon so many people were interesting in helping that Wagner started a Facebook page to provide updates and organize assistance.
The group quickly found a foster home for Isis, but they knew she needed a forever home, so Wagner partnered with Good Karma Pet Rescue and began taking applications for Isis’ adoption.
Soon they found a suitable home with a friend of a friend in Michigan, and another member of the Facebook group offered to fly with the cat to meet her new owner.
When Price learned that Isis would have a new family to care for her, she was moved to tears; just knowing Isis was taken care of caused noticeable changes in Price’s demeanor.
“The next day, the nurse told me I looked completely different," Price said. "She said I was shining. My doctor and social worker said the same thing.”
The plan was to relocate Isis before Christmas, but when Wagner brought the cat to visit Price and saw how happy they were, Wagner knew she had to keep them together as long as possible. So for now, Isis will remain in Florida and visit Price as often as possible.
“They truly love each other. It’s good for both of them,” Wagner said.
The good deeds continue
With Isis taken care of, Wagner and her Facebook community turned their attention to Price. They brought her items from her apartment, decorated her room for Christmas and replaced her broken Kindle so she could read.
They also started a Christmas card campaign, and soon Price received nearly 100 cards wishing her and Isis a happy holiday.
Price says Wagner has spoiled her and even called her a fairy godmother, but Wagner is just as touched by the community outpouring.
“It’s incredible,” Wagner said. “Nobody in this community knows Joan, many of them don’t even know me. But here they are, coming together and offering to help and buy Joan things she needs or even just send encouraging words.”
Price is grateful for the support she’s received and plans to spend the time she has left with her new friends and with Isis, who continues to visit her.
“I love her. I’ll miss her. But as long as she has a good home where she’s taken care of and truly loved, I’m happy," Price said. "I’m at peace.”
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