When Dominique Amerosa, the president of Rags to Riches Animal Rescue, received word about a stray Persian cat wandering the streets of Tampa, Florida, she was ready to help.
At first glance, everything seemed typical; even a trip to the vet confirmed that this cat, initially thought to be a neutered male, was just a regular stray.
However, a twist was just around the corner.
Just three weeks later, the same cat, now lovingly named Gertrude, surprised Dominique by adding a new member to her family: a tiny, energetic kitten called Wisp.
Wisp is not just any Persian cat; she's a bundle of joy with a one-of-a-kind appearance and an endearing chattiness.
These qualities have made her an internet sensation.
Within no time, Wisp had amassed a whopping 860,000 followers and a staggering 57 million likes on TikTok!
Some of her followers say she looks "scrungly," while others lovingly jest that she looks like a used napkin.
Dominique herself chuckles, commenting, “It's as if she’s just risen from bed or maybe she’s plotting a mad scientist’s experiment!”
This quirky look, characteristic of Persians her age, has endeared her to many.
And her diet adds to her charm!
Due to her dietary requirements, Wisp has to feed on a watered-down slurry, often leading to a cute orange stain around her white, furry mouth, as if she's just had a tasty treat.
Her daily routine is pure luxury...
She sips bottled water and lounges comfortably under the attentive care of Dominique and the Rags to Riches Animal Rescue team, surrounded by six playful foster dogs and a few cheeky foster kittens.
Overall, the rescue looks after an impressive roster of 60 cats and nearly 30 dogs.
While her mom, Gertrude, is a tad reserved, Wisp has found an unexpected friend in Lilac, another rescue cat who, despite not being fond of other felines, has taken a shine to her.
They're often spotted cuddling, with Lilac lovingly grooming Wisp.
Wisp's TikTok fame came almost by accident. Dominique recalls:
"After some nudging from the rescue team, I decided to create a TikTok account for our organization. One night, I uploaded a video of Wisp eagerly awaiting her meal and went to bed.'
"To my astonishment, by morning, we had garnered over 200,000 followers, with countless comments and new Instagram followers!”
“All our animals are charming, but Wisp? She's an absolute riot! She's full of zest, and I love showing the world her spirited antics.”
But life's not all play for Wisp. She's bravely dealing with an intestinal condition which sometimes makes it hard for her.
But with the love and medical expertise provided by Rags to Riches Animal Rescue, including a special procedure called ballooning (which helps her poop), Wisp is receiving all the care she needs.
Dominique emphasizes the joy and resilience of animals like Wisp, saying, “Many might not grasp the beauty of caring for animals with unique needs. But with dedication and love, there are endless ways to support them.”
And Dominique's dedication has paid off – Wisp can now poop all on her own, with just a tiny bit of help from her favorite human.
This in turn means that her diet can change, so she won't always be on the slurry!
In the face of occasional negative comments on social media, Dominique remains steadfast.
"Our commitment is unwavering. We stand by our animals through thick and thin. We know their spirit and strength, and as long as they're willing to fight, we're right there beside them."
In Dominique's eyes, Wisp embodies resilience. She's truly a little fighter with a big heart.
Check out the video below and you'll see what all the fuss is about: