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We know cats, they are beautiful furry creatures and once you adopt a cat, the chances of you staying away from it are very low. You’d love to spend your entire day with your little catto and keeping your attention away from your cat is one of the most difficult things to do. But we need to understand that cats are very independent and they love to explore, go to new places, find new cat buddies etc, and these are the things that can make your cat disappear. Yes! If you’re not careful and do not have your eyes on them while they’re out, they can have a very difficult time trying to find their way back home, which is just heartbreaking for the owner and the cat itself. Domestic cats have a very difficult time on the streets and it’s by pure luck that you might come across your kitty again. (Always look for them in the morning if they disappear in the night.)
Mindy and her husband Luke visited an animal shelter back in 2015, and they came across a shy kitten who wasn’t playing with the others. Their interaction with the kitten immediately signalled off a family pass for the little cat baby and they adopted him.
“You could see in his eyes he just needed love. It did take work, he had an immediate attachment to my husband, Luke, but one day we woke up and he was just laying on my chest purring and that was the start of my sidekick cat,” said Mindy.
The cat and Mindy having a mother-son moment.
via: Mindy Criner
One day, when the cat got really comfortable around the house, he took a trip to their backyard and soon afterwards his little cat stroll turned into a disappearance.
“He went missing at the beginning of May, he would go out for a little while during the day if it was nice and come home when called for lunch or dinner, and sound off with a loud meow to let you know he was coming. I put this new collar on him that had just come in the mail and let him out to play in the tree out front like usual and he paused and looked at me and I just had this strange feeling I wasn’t going to see him again, to the point I actually called my husband and told him about it. We assumed it would be a normal day, but we weren’t that lucky. He didn’t come home for dinner, didn’t sound off when called. By morning I was in full panic mode,” -Mindy.
Mindy and her husband started looking for him, thank God the cat had a chip installed in him, so if he was reported to any shelter, they would know about him. They placed his food and litterbox outside of their house which is also a very smart thing to do if your cat goes missing. They even posted their cat’s details on the Lost & Found Pets – Hampton Rods, VA, Facebook Page.
But sadly, nothing came up regarding their missing son.
“I sent a post with all cats info to Gina (an absolute gem of a woman, runs the Lost and found pets of Hampton roads FB page solely out of the good of her heart) who immediately shared it and had folks looking. We took all the recommended tips she provides on the page, set of this litter box and food station so he could smell his way home, and set up small housing stations a few blocks and about a mile from home with his pet house, food, and something that smelled like us (neighbours were fantastic and even checked in for us so we wouldn’t have to travel with the baby so much). We put posters at the local grocery store, vets offices, shelters, and in the neighbourhood. No Cat to be found. After a few months of nightly walks calling and praying animal control or the shelter would call, I started to lose hope.” -Mindy.
Mindy gave up all hope. But the scenario changed in her favour.
“He was microchipped and had a collar with the vet’s info and my name, I knew that if someone found him or even the worse-he had been hit by a car-i would get a call because he would get scanned. Weeks turned to a year, then a little more and every day that cracks in my broken heart got a little bigger. Then on Halloween, 536 days after he disappeared, I got a voicemail from Animal Control and an email from the microchip company saying he had been found!”
Sooner or later, good news struck this adorable family and Mindy rushed to get her little cat boy back.
“The voicemail from AC said to get in touch with Peninsula Regional Animal Shelter to find him. I drove to that shelter as fast as the law allowed and walked through the door already fighting back tears. They walked me through all the rooms, but no Cat. The wonderful woman at the desk got right on the phone and called AC and everyone she could think of and found out that a man had called AC after Cat had been hit by a car Halloween night. When AC showed up the gentleman in his 60s said that he had been feeding what he thought was a female cat for at least a YEAR when Cat was hit, in lieu of taking him to a vet he called AC and reported the “stray” he’d been feeding for a year was hit and needed to go. AC immediately scanned him and my information popped right up. The gentleman didn’t even know microchips existed. He kept Cat at his house until I could be contacted. I called right away and picked him up that afternoon,” Mindy said.
AC looked after the cat and reported him back to Mindy when the chip was examined.
“The reunion was unreal. He was only 1.8 miles away, 2 blocks from the park we take his tiny human to 3-4 times a week. He was sitting on the porch eating out of his bowl when he looked over at me and I said his name and gave him my signature kitty kitty type call. He meowed right back to me, as he always had, grabbed another bite of food from the bowl and walked right over to me as I approached. I sat on the steps and let him come to me in case he was scared, and he got right in my lap and purred. I started walking towards the car where the cat heard my husband (who has an incredibly distinctive voice), Luke, was talking to the guy that had been feeding him, and Cat knew we were going home and purred louder than I knew possible and gave me that first suuuuper long head boop. It was like that head boop nudged that little piece of my broken heart back in place. My husband caught the perfect picture of the exact moment he knew he was going home with his family.”
“When we got home he went straight up to “his” bathroom where we keep the plants during the winter so it’s a mini jungle and plopped right down in his same old spot. Broke my heart and melted it all at once.”
“His canine siblings came up to see him, they all had their own welcome home head boop moments too,” Mindy revealed. I hope that our story will give others missing their pets hope, and maybe those who have unknowingly taken in someone else’s pet will check to see if they’re scanned so that pet can have their happy reunion with their family, and someone else can feel the overwhelming joy we’re experiencing,” Mindy said.
The beautiful reunion this family deserved.
Here’s what other people had to say.
God bless her.
Your pets are like your actual children and no one should go through this sort of hardship.
Another awesome reunion tale.
And with that, we end this story with a happy ending. Please, if you plan on adopting a cat, make sure you keep an eye on them if you let them go out. There have been many people who lost their pets due to negligence and it’s very difficult to find them once they go missing. If you plan on letting them out, get a collar that is detectable by location. Let us know your thoughts on this story in the comment section below.