ASPCA Happy Tail: One Quirky Kitty

Tuesday, September 10, 2013 - 2:30pm

Stephanie of the East Village shared the following story with us about meeting a very quirky kitty named Mr. Snaggles at the ASPCA Adoption Center in Manhattan, and how he seamlessly became a part of her family:

Many months after our cat passed away, I surprised my husband on his birthday by taking him to the ASPCA to adopt a cat. He had no idea where we were going, and was actually grouchy at first because he thought I was dragging him to a museum.

We spent all day looking at cats. We had such a pleasant experience at the Adoption Center. It is immaculate and has a friendly and well-informed staff. 

My husband noticed him first—he was the one cat that was really responsive to us—a sweet, sad looking orange tabby with saucer-shaped eyes.

“He’s only got three legs; no one will ever want him,” I thought. 

During his stay at the ASPCA, veterinarians tried to correct an extensive injury to his leg, but when his injury would not heal, they had no choice but to amputate it.

Once we brought him home, we followed the suggested procedure of confining him to a smaller room at first to let him get acclimated to his new surroundings. My husband, the new cat and I were all stuffed in our tiny bathroom. He immediately jumped into my husband’s lap and started purring, so we decided to let him out into the rest of the apartment.  He sat between us as we watched a movie and slept at the foot of the bed that night.

We named him Mr. Snaggles, homage to his less obvious but cuter flaw, his missing canine tooth.

A new amputee, he took some time getting used to his lack of leg.  For about a month, he would forget it was missing and attempted to scratch with his phantom leg by stretching out and wiggling his stump. I was conflicted between laughing and crying when I first witnessed this, but now I just brush his side. 

Finally accustomed to his predicament, Mr. Snaggles is the most affectionate, loving cat I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. He has excellent grooming habits, cleaning himself as soon as he uses the litter box. He is a valued and fantastic new member of our family.

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Thank you, Sandi. Your story made me cry and that's a good thing. I have spent most of my 49 years on this earth rescuing the one's that have been forgotten, abused and neglected. I will continue to do this until my days here are done. Thank you for being one of us!

dawn henri

made me cry


Yes. You must always be on the lookout for the perfect cat-the perfect snuggler, the perfect mind-reader, the perfect love bug, that perfect inner cat or dog whether they are missing some outer feature or not. Good for you taking in this big sweetie! He is obviously a treasure.


I got sniffly reading your great story. Sounds like Mr. Snaggles brought you and your husband together as well as getting a great home. Thank you also for the wonderful pictures. I have a beautiful, loving rescue kitty (not special needs, but long haired and black which are not popular). She needs to be an only "child," so I enjoy looking at great kitty pictures. Thanks again for sharing.

Melissa DeLellis

Suggestion for a litter box for your tri-pod: The larger plastic container used to store suff and put under your bed. Use the lid underneath for a litter catcher. It is a little lower and allows a bigger area for your kitty to do his duty.

selma yellow kidney

Its so amazing how animals bounce back even though they have been through so much. so awsome


I have lived your story, Stephanie. Mr. Snaggles is very much like our Nikki. We rescued Nikki in Florida when he was a kitten. We purchased a B&B in Virginia and relocated there. We were on 5 acres and there was only one road nearby. We found out the hard way that even one road can lead to disaster. Long story short...Nikki was struck by an SUV and disappeared for nearly three days. There was a large equestrian faciltiy nearby so we looked there and any other place, including the vast woodlands, but were not able to located poor Nikki. On the third day of him missing, I awoke to find him on the pool deck. At first he looked almost normal but when I approached him he tried to stand and walk. It was clear then that he had sustained major trauma to his lower extremities. There was a wonderful veterinarian that we had started to take our other 9 rescue kitties to. She and her staff worked to remove the more than 1000 maggots from Nikki's wounds and to salvage what they could of his legs. It turned out that he lost one leg and the other had to be fused into place at the hip joint. As horrible as all of this was for him...and us...he's the light of our lives. Nikki is a beautiful British Blue. He took to having only three legs right away and continues to race about the house even today. We adore him and wouldn't take anything in the world for him. I hope that everyone will see from your story and mine that allthough damaged and handicapped, amputees can and do make fantastic pets. This whole ordeal was very humbling, as I saw with my own eyes the determination in Nikki which made me realize just how insignificant the so called obstacles that we humans face every day actually are. Nikki never felt sorry for himself and was determined to be an even better cat than he was the day before. From that day on...I can only hope the achieve such a great disposition in life!


He's so cute! There's a great deal to be said for a cuddle cat.... We have 7 rescue housecats (even a long haired orange boy with a broken tail (how?) that I call Dagwood and his daddy calls "Snagglepus"!). Our best cuddle cat died last year at 14, and someone insisted I take our new (4 mos so far) Siamese girl - #7! We didn't WANT 7 inside cats, but she loves both of us so much we just gave up; she sleeps in our bed and puts her arms around our necks and cuddles - a Siamese? I just thank the Lord for her....


I was so happy to read this story. I have a cat who looks very similar to Mr. Snaggles, but no white and no missing tooth. Chevy is missing her back left leg, but is one of the most affectionate cats I ever knew. I feel so bad when she gets and itch and tries to use the phantom leg, so I scratch the ear, chin, shoulder, or whatever she needs scratched when I see her try. Congrats, Mr. Snuggles, on finding a happy home!!!


He's a beautiful cat. I can't help but notice his green eyes and those gorgeous markings on his forehead.