Remarkable Cat Helps Boy Battle Selective Mutism
Jessi-Cat, an extraordinary feline, is helping a boy battle his mutism. Read the touching story below!Published October 8, 2012
Flickr User maggz
Seven-year-old Lorcan Dillon is a delightful tow-haired little boy who lives in Great Britain. While he can be a chatterbox with family and close friends at home, when he’s in the presence of strangers or in an unfamiliar environment, he becomes silent, uncommunicative and withdrawn. Lorcan was diagnosed with Selective Mutism (SM) at the age of three-and-a half, when he started nursery school.
SM is a childhood anxiety disorder that is often misdiagnosed as Asperger’s Syndrome or autism. Since expressing emotions verbally is extremely difficult for children with this condition, they often become anxious and are often afraid of speaking in classroom situations.
To help Lorcan to communicate and better cope with his anxiety, his parents decided to get him a cat. As a result, Lorcan now has a very special feline companion; a two-year-old Birman named Jessi-Cat who is always at his side.
With Jessi-Cat’s sweet personality and the unconditional love he showers on his young two-legged friend, the kitty has been helping Lorcan to more easily and directly articulate his feelings, profoundly impacting the little boy’s life.
Jessi-Cat was recently named “National Cat of the Year” at the Cats Protection National Cat Awards 2012 in honor of the transformative changes he has made in Lorcan’s life. The trusting bond that developed between Lorcan and Jessi-Cat has, for the first time, enabled Lorcan to say, “I love you.”
And while his words were not directed at Jayne Dillon, his mom, she was totally ecstatic upon hearing her son directly communicate his feelings to Jessi-Cat.
In describing the effect the feline has had on her son’s life, Jayne said, “She is without a doubt the best friend a boy could have and has had a huge positive impact on his life. We’ve had her for a couple of years and in the last year alone he seems to be making excellent progress at school. In the past two weeks he’s started communicating with people he doesn’t know very well and even reads to one of the teachers now – something he’s never done before.”
Meet Lorcan, Jayne and Jessi-Cat up close and purrsonal by watching the fascinating video uploaded to YouTube by catsprotectionuk.
Humans and pets can develop extraordinarily deep and everlasting bonds which often result in miraculous healings. Has your life been impacted profoundly by a special furry, feathered or finned companion? Tell us in a comment.