When I get scared or overwhelmed by the garbage fire that is the world right now, I remember the advice of Mr. Rogers. “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” This little boy who dresses up in different superhero costumes to feed stray cats is the hero we need.
Kris Papiernik and Kia Griffin have been caring for Philadelphia street cats for the last ten years. The couple rescues and rehomes as many cats as possible. When a cat is too feral to be domesticated, Papiernik and Griffin feed them and make every attempt to get them spayed and neutered. When their five-year-old nephew, Shon, visits them, he comes along on their rescue missions.
Papiernik told The Dodo that while they were afraid the rambunctious young boy would scare the cats, they totally underestimated him.
“It was the total opposite — they just gravitated to him,” Papiernik said. “He’d scratch their bellies and scratch their heads. It was amazing to see these cats who wouldn’t even allow us to touch them, but immediately took to him. He must have this magical effect that the cats can pick up.”
Or maybe the stray cats thought Shon was a superhero —literally.
Shon told his aunt that he likes to dress up because it, “makes him feel like a superhero to animals.”
Griffin and Papiernik use Shon’s cat-charming skills to get several feral cats spayed and neutered.
“We couldn’t get Bug neutered or anything because he wouldn’t come to us, and he wouldn’t come near the trap,” Papiernik said. “But when Shon came around and started feeding him, Bug came immediately to him and, ever since then, Bug has been a friendly cat.”
The boy’s aunts said that Shon loves helping the cats so much that he gets really upset when he can’t go with them.
“If it’s raining or cold or he can’t go, he gets really upset,” Papiernik said. “He cries, and it really hurts him hard.”
Shon is definitely a superhero in our book!
What do you think? Let us know in the comments.
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(Image: Twitter / @DaliKwesha)