When Erin Merryn said goodbye to her cat Bailey in December 2018, she couldn’t imagine finding another cat anywhere near her best friend. Bailey had built a loyal following on social media and starred on viral videos with Erin’s daughter Abby singing and reading to him. He even inspired a book, Bailey, No Ordinary Cat. Bailey’s fans mourned his loss, but the family who loved him, which includes Erin, her husband, and daughters Abigail and Hannah, were heartbroken.
Then came a ray of sunshine. One of Bailey’s followers was grooming a cat that had recently given birth to a litter. Did Erin and the girls want to visit the kittens? As it turned out, one of those kittens stood out. Like Bailey, this kitten was orange; but unlike Bailey, she was a woman. (Orange cats are usually, but not always, male.)
“She was one of five kittens: three boys, two girls,” says Erin. “We first met her at the foster home when she was 7 weeks old. We adopted her when she was 8 weeks old. ”Erin surprised her daughters Abigail and Hannah with the kitten for their birthday in the summer of 2019. They were 5 and 3 years old, respectively. “Our baby, 8 month old Claire, was crazy about carrots from the start. I asked the girls what to call them and Abigail shouted, ‘Carrot!’ So it got stuck. “
Another “No Ordinary Cat”
It soon became clear that Carrot was like Bailey in other ways. “After we lost our cat Bailey at the age of 14, I never thought we could find a cat as incredible as him again,” says Erin. “I knew within 48 hours of having Carrot at home that we had another ‘no ordinary cat’.”
Carrot let the girls push her into strollers, put her in high chairs, and the baby held her tight and played with her whiskers and paws – things that most other cats couldn’t stand, says Erin. “She just went with the flow of everything they did to her.”
The girls even drove around with Carrot in their motorized car and kept them on a leash. “I couldn’t believe my eyes,” says Erin. “We saw a different cat like Bailey.”
When Erin’s daughters were born, Bailey was already in recent years. But Carrot was just getting started. “I thought it was great that my girls were able to experience life with a kitten.”
Celebrity status of carrot
Carrot’s adventures are documented on YouTube and Instagram, where she has 275,000 followers. She has appeared in Good Morning America and Access Hollywood, among others, says Erin. Her celebrity status has been used for good by raising money for charity.
“I’m on the board of a nonprofit child abuse prevention agency called The Children Advocacy Center of Northwest Cook County, Illinois,” said Erin. “By making a contribution, I will share our donation goal. With COVID happening, the agency had to cancel its largest fundraiser in two years, which raised $ 200,000. Since getting Carrot a year and a half ago, she has raised nearly $ 50,000 for the nonprofit. “
Like Bailey, Carrot got into writing and published a book on March 30th. The diary of the cat named Carrot records her first year like a diary and has lots of fun pictures for fans.
“Within weeks of getting Carrot, I knew she was going to have a book,” says Erin. She once dressed Carrot in a tutu and shared the photo on social media saying it could be the cover of a book. “I didn’t know it was going to be the cover of your book!” The book describes the year in the life of Carrot sharing her daily adventures and reads as if Carrot wrote it herself and she describes her daily adventures with the girls . It starts with their birth and eventually their adoption from a shelter.
“Then you read about her spa days, vacation, mischief she and Claire, my youngest, get into and the love and attention she gets from Abby and Hannah. Halfway through the book, she is even reunited with her birth mother, who was also an adopted animal shelter cat. It’s a cute book that has a photo for every entry in that day’s diary. I really advocate the point of not buying the whole book to the end. “
Since she can walk well on a leash and has a relaxed personality, Carrot will accompany Erin to some book signing sessions in animal shelters. The first shelter in line is the same one that Carrot was adopted from.
The book was published just in time for Carrot’s second birthday on April 1st. It is perhaps the happiest birthday present of all for a cat who brought the gift of love to a family.
Follow Karott’s adventures!
Youtube: you are My Sunshine