The amazing story of Henry began many years ago when he was found as a stray kitten on the property of Cathy Conheim in Julian, CA. The little kitten was unable to move his left leg, so Conheim rushed him to a local veterinary hospital where she learned that his leg had to be amputated. Henry quickly recovered from the surgery and became such an inspiration to Conheim that she decided that he could inspire others with physical disabilities as well as teach tolerance and resilience.
The two created several children's books as told from Henry's point of view. The books have been distributed to more than 45,000 people around the world including victims of Hurricane Katrina and to the families of wounded veterans. The books have also been given to help the children's amputee project in Haiti.
According to Conheim, "People speak to animals differently and more openly. Animals are our safe havens, an unending source of unconditional love and acceptance. Whether the animals are real, stuffed, or virtual, they become trusted confidants and helpers." It's for this reason that Henry has touched so many lives. His books have generated more than 50,000 letters from children and adults around the world. To date, sales from his books have garnered more than $50,000 for local animal welfare groups.
Henry has been name the ASPCA Cat of the Year for his work for animals and people in need. "The ASPCA Human Award winners have demonstrated extraordinary courage and compassion in the face of adversity from natural disasters to man-made crises," ASPCA President and CEO Ed Sayres said. "The ASPCA is proud to honor those who have dedicated their lives to strengthening the human-animal bond.
Henry reaches out to help people of all ages through his website, personal correspondence and through his critically acclaimed books. "I try very hard to teach humans better ways to be," says Henry, "and raise lots of dollars for animals."