A Rescued Cat Reunited with its Owners
22 June 2017
This is a story from one of our volunteers, Tony, who tells of a stray cat he found in his garden...
I love cats, they are just irresistible, so when a little stray tabby took up residence under the rhododendron bush in our front garden I had to befriend and feed it. This went on for several days and although very nervous it was always hungry but would not allow me to get close enough to touch it. It never ventured further than a few yards from the sanctuary of the rhododendron bush to drink occasionally from the lily pond or bask in the sun next to the bush where it would retreat whenever I approached.
Having recently acquired 2 very friendly and affectionate cats from Cats Protection I realised that help was at hand, either to re-home or reunite our visiting feline with its owner. So a call to Chris Batt, our area co-coordinator resulted in being equipped with a micro-chip reader and a cage in which to trap this lost soul.
Having practised how to use the micro-chip reader on our two cats it should have been a simple matter to check out if the stray had been chipped, but every time I poked my head into the bush with the reader the cat took flight and I began to think this must be a feral cat that is scared of humans. I tried in vain to communicate with it by attempting a cat-like miaow and blinking my eyes, but the only response was a pitifully feeble miaow or an open but silent mouth.
There was no way I would ever be able to catch it without resorting to the cage trap. So I began putting its food just inside the cage and then day by day placing it further towards the back towards the plate that triggers the closure. Such was its appetite that it showed no fear, and within a few days it was feeding from the back of the cage thereby making it possible to set the trapping mechanism.
Not wanting to trap it overnight I set up the trap one morning and stood back to watch him cautiously enter and start feeding from the far end of the trap with its paw on the trapping mechanism. Alas, puss had such a light touch that nothing happened but I was close enough to trigger the mechanism by hand. In an instant he had been trapped and I felt relieved, but with a twinge of guilt for betraying its trust. By then the desire to escape my clutches had taken precedent over its appetite as it tried to break free. Soon he had quietened down and was on its way to the local vet. Much to my surprise and delight the vet was able to get close enough to detect a chip which revealed that he had a local address. So puss, whose real name was Jake was reunited with his owners.