By Na Chan
Meet 7-year-old Iris Grace, the girl with autism whose beautiful artworks shaken the Internet for a while. She received many attention not only because of her paintings but also the story behind her success.
Iris is a girl with a special condition, so she needs someone to accompany her, at least in her early years. Though had almost given up on the search, one day, her parents brought home a friendly kitten, then the two bonded almost immediately. The little furry friend was Thula, who was an almost 1 year old Maine Coon at that time.
Maine Coon cats are known for their intelligence and gentle nature, and Thula differs in no way. She has been a great help for Iris: “Thula has lowered daily anxieties in life and keeps Iris calm,” said Iris’ mother, Arabella Carter-Johnson, “but equally has the effect of encouraging her to be more social. She will talk more to Thula, saying little phrases like ‘sit cat.’”
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“What ever activity we are doing Thula is there and wants to help and be involved.”
“… she offers Iris her companionship, friendship and supports me in encouraging Iris to interact.”
“Iris has been through a stage over the last year of hating baths and having her hair washed. Thula has been getting in the bath tub with Iris and even letting me shampoo her as well to help Iris.”
Thanks to Thula, Iris has an easier time getting through her days.
Thula keeps Iris accompanied in art sessions.
“We took Iris to Equine therapy but she didn’t seem very interested in horses at that time. Then I began to think about a therapy dog.”