The fifth kitten, the smallest of all, was in the dark corner trying to move. While his brothers and sisters moved on all four limbs, this little kitten moved around by dragging his hind limbs. He dragged till fur, skin and flesh came off; and was fast getting infected with boils forming all over its tiny body. This last born kitten had deformed hind limbs - club feet with its paws curled shut.
His vet said he was born with a 'tortoise leg' syndrome and hence was given the name 'Tortie'. Treatment for Tortie was very harsh for such a tiny tyke. He was pumped, more of force-fed, with antibiotics, multi-vitamin drops and soaked in warm diluted iodine three times a day. Inspite of his protests of heart-rending wails, EJ kept at it. A cheap carpet was also bought so Tortie would not hurt more than necessary. EJ moved like a zombie for months getting up at 5am and sleeping way past midnights to give Tortie his works.
As soon as skin was formed, EJ massaged and gently pulled to straighten his hind limbs as often as possible. The long sofa was where Tortie learnt how to walk and climb. He was constantly sick and visits to his vet was on a regular basis as he grew up. EJ persisted and never once gave up hope.
Tortie then grew and grew and grew! And became the largest of them all. But his hind legs are comparatively smaller and 'knocked-knees' if you are observant enough.
When finally Tortie grew into adulthood, his vet, who has kept his silent thoughts to himself, told EJ that this is one lucky cat. He thought Tortie would not make it but on the contrary Tortie beat all odds and survived!