Rescued from Best Friends Animal Society, Rexie Roo is proof that all animals deserve happy, loving homes.

People who volunteer at animal shelters know how frustrating the experience can be sometimes. Even though you know that every animal deserves a chance at a happy life full of love, it can be heartbreaking to see the days at the shelter tick by—sometimes by the hundreds—for some dogs and cats. And when the animal in question has an extra set of needs or requirements—be it vision problems, age, or socialization and anxiety issues—those waits can become even longer.

Luckily, there ARE people out there with the compassion and willingness to help animals who have special challenges find their forever homes, and social media makes it easier than ever to share their stories to more people at a time, which leads to more and more adoptions.

That brings us to Rexie Roo, an adorable male tuxedo cat who found his way to a rural Utah animal shelter in January of 2020. Rexie had two badly broken front legs that required medical attention, and the shelter he was brought to didn't have the resources to properly care for him. The group sent a desperate online plea asking for assistance in getting the cat the medical care he needed. That call was heard by the Best Friends Animal Society in Salt Lake City, who saved Rexie from euthanasia by arranging to pick him up the next morning. 

After relocating Rexie to their facility, staff veterinarians determined that his front legs were too badly injured to be saved. Both legs were amputated, leaving Rexie with just his hind feet to hop around on.

Despite the setback, Rexie quickly became everyone's favorite little cat as he learned to hop around and balance on just two legs. Shelter volunteers say they were surprised by how quickly the affectionate black and white cat seemed to mend following his surgery. Once he was mobile, he spent time in two different foster homes, with plenty of pictures posted to Instagram along the way. That was where Cairistiona Flatley saw him and immediately fell in love.

"As soon as I saw Rexie on the Best Friends Instagram, I was immediately drawn to him," Flatley said in a video. "I emailed Best Friends right away and met him in a couple hours and the next day I got to bring him home."

Video courtesy of Best Friends Animal Society

There are, of course, accommodations Flatley had to make for Rexie once he moved in. While he eats, snuggles, and hops around like the best of 'em, there are some jumps that he just can't make. But as Flatley and the volunteers at Best Friends all came to find out, none of that stands in the way of Rexie's playful, outgoing, affectionate personality! 

With the pandemic causing so many people to isolate at home or "commute" to work virtually, it's no wonder so many people like Flately adopted a pet last year. Thankfully, all that extra time at home has helped Rexie acclimate to Flatley and her other cat, KeeKee. Now Flatley is excited to begin introducing Rexie to her friends in-person (he's already made over 900 new acquaintances via his own Insta page) and continuing to show people that, no matter their circumstances, every animal is capable and worthy of love and being loved.