In an extremely rare discovery, a tiny stray kitten was discovered with neither male nor female sex organs.
Hope the kitten was taken by the Cats Protection Tyneside Adoption Centre in the United Kingdom. They thought the kitten was like any other feline at first, but further investigation proved that Hope was nothing short of extraordinary.
Cats Protection shared on Facebook that the little kitten was brought into the rescue with their siblings where they were found to be of neither sex.
According to a press release, rescuers initially believed Hope was a female when they were first rescued. Cats Protection explained, “Hope was originally thought to be a female cat when they were admitted into Cats Protection’s care but on closer inspection it was discovered they had no external sex organs at all.”
Unlike hermaphrodite cats, which have both sex organs and are also extremely rare, Hope has neither sex organs (internally nor externally). The condition is so rare that it doesn’t even have an official name!
Fiona Brockbank, a veterinarian with Cats Protections, said in the press release: “We carried out a procedure to look for sex organs but there’s nothing apparent inside or out. There’s an outside possibility of some ectopic ovarian tissue hiding away internally but we think this is extremely unlikely.”
She added, “This is so rare that there isn’t really a commonly used term for this condition, but it is effectively ‘sexual organ agenesis’ – where agenesis is the lack or failure of development in relation to body organs.”
The Cats Protection Tyneside Adoption Centre shared on Facebook that Hope is playful and uses the litter box, though they’re unsure how the rare condition will affect their future health or lifestyle.
Hope was put up for adoption, with the rescue looking for a family that would be able to care for Hope and love them as they are – knowing that they may need special medical care or lifestyle adjustments down the road. Though Hope seems like a fairly normal kitten now, so little is known about the condition that it’s unclear how they may be impacted in the future.
Thankfully, it wasn’t long before the little kitten went to their loving forever home. The rescue shared in the comments on the post that Hope moved on to a “wonderful furever home with a great family.”Whizzco