Ugly Bat Boy has been enjoying his 15 minutes of fame (again)

“But he’s got a great personality!”

Sure he does. If only life were a congeniality contest instead of the great, big beauty pageant it really is.

Still, Ugly Bat Boy has his charms. This 10-year-old cat has been enjoying a moment (the latest in a lifetime of stares) and he is happy to take it all in. He is striking – though whether it’s in a good or bad way depends entirely on your point of view.

For most of his life, Ugly Bat Boy has been in the care of New Hampshire veterinarian Dr. Stephen Bassett. A decade ago, Bassett cared for a very sick kitten who eventually died from a severe upper respiratory infection, but not before captivating Basssett and his daughter, who were intrigued by her unique appearance.

The kitten’s owner, however, wasn’t so taken with the look, and gave Bassett a littermate who looked just like her – bald, wrinkly, with a thick patch of hair covering the chest.

“I think there is some genetic basis to it but we don’t know specifically what that is,” Bassett tells Even Ugly’s breed is still a mystery, despite analysis that’s been done to determine how he got to looking the way he does.

For seven years, Ugly lived as an outdoor cat, hunting for prey. “People who saw him wouldn’t know what he was,” Bassett says. “They would be somewhat nervous about him.”

At some point, Ugly became a great source of friction among the other cats in Bassett’s home and was ex-communicated to the Exeter Veterinary Hospital, Bassett’s practice. For the past three years, Ugly has transformed from a hunter to a pampered indoor cat, one who gets special visits and even makes headlines thanks to how he looks.

“He’s actually become more personable since he’s come to the hospital just because he sees more people,” Bassett says. “Because of his semi-celebrity status, people spend a lot of time talking to him and petting him. He preens.”

Check out our photo gallery for a look at all of Ugly Bat Boy’s preening poses