Tuesday, August 19, 2008

SIim Jim

The return of the poor old blind cat back to her owners last week made me think about Slim Jim. In mid-January 2006 I noticed a skinny black cat hanging around the house (sigh). After checking with neighbors to make sure it wasn't one of theirs I started coaxing the cat to me. It didn't take long before the cat was purring and rubbing up against me. I was able to pick him up right away and was shocked to find out that he was declawed! Poor thing! He was neutered and looked old but he wasn't starving, he just had the sleek physique of a siamese. One distinct feature was that part of his left ear was missing in a crescent shape. I brought him in the house where he made himself quite at home lying on my lap. I named him Slim Jim and amazingly he got along with everyone in the house. My neighbor who fosters started emailing all the local shelters to find out if anyone reported this cat missing.

Within 48 hours she excitedly called me saying that she thought she found the owner. Someone did send a Lost Cat notice to the Montgomery County Humane Society a few days after Christmas about a lost black cat. The shelter was having a little trouble getting in touch with the owners since both the husband and wife (and daughter) were deaf and the shelter did not have a TTY machine. After a few more days the folks finally responded by email and the man was going to come by my house to check to see if it was his cat. I asked my neighbor if he mentioned the distinct missing part of his ear and she said no. Well, I huffed, I have doubts that this is their cat. That would be the first thing I would have mentioned if it were my cat!

The next night I had a pad and pen ready for communication and my neighbor and the man stop by. My black cat Woody, being the black lab of cats, came running up to greet him. The man immediately went on his knees and picked up Woody, looked at him, then quickly put him down and sadly shook his head "No, this is not my cat" I started laughing and tapped him on the shoulder and motioned "That was MY cat" I found Slim Jim behind my couch and carried him to the man where he immediately took the cat, and with his hand felt the missing ear and said "THIS IS MY CAT!!"

The cat was actually his wife's who found the cat as a kitten in a New York City alley 14 years ago. They lived on the complete opposite end of my town and said Sammy must have gotten out while they were moving their daughter home for college break. Since it was going on three weeks they had all lost hope that they would ever see their cat so the man never told his wife about our email exchange and was going to bring Sammy back home and just put him in their bedroom and wait for his wife to come home from work. Boy what a wonderful surprise that probably was!!

Now, I have to tell you, the man made a big deal about how they plastered their neighborhood with flyers and gave me a copy. This is basically what it said:

Black cat missing

Owners phone number

Yes, they had a cartoon black cat on the notice. Let me give you all advice on Lost Animal notices. If you don't have a photo of your pets, take one today so you will have it handy in case it gets lost. This is how I would have listed it:


Indoor only Black Cat (Sammy)

(Photo of cat)

Neutered male, declawed, 14 years old

Distinct missing part of left ear in crescent shape

Last seen at 1234 Mockingbird Lane on December 24

Please call 222-2222, cell: 222-2222, email ___________

Anyway it was a happy ending all the way around. The man asked if I wanted a reward and I vigorously shook my head, no, no, no! I was just tickled that we were able to reunite Slim Jim, I mean Sammy, back to his owners.

The following weekend my doorbell rang and it was the man again. This time with two 20-pound bags of cat food for me and the best thing was that they were the brand that I use! He said he made note of the brand when he was at my house and saw it in my kitchen. What a sweet gesture!


Dog_geek said...

Awww, that is a great story. I'll bet his heart just sank when he saw Woody, and then leapt up again when he saw Slim Jim!

BTW - a really great site with recovery tips and poster-making tips for people who have lost (or found) an animal is the Missing Pet Partnership: http://www.lostapet.org/index.php

Tons of good advice there, plus information on how lost or displaced pets typically behave in different circumstances.

KGMom said...

Too too sweet. And such a happy ending. (Although if Slim Jim had ended up living with you--that too would have been a happy ending!)
Oh yes--I have cat pictures of both of our current cats, as well as pics of the cats no longer here.

Roses and Lilacs said...

Hi, I'm glad I found you site. I'm a cat lover. Have several cats.

I enjoyed the story of Slim Jim. It's heartbreaking when an older cat loses his people.

Dorothy said...

What a heartwarming story!!! I'm so happy "slim Jim" was reunited with his owners and that they were grateful to you. (Slim Jim sure found the right house when he was lost though.)
PS..We have a doormat that reads "must love cats".

possumlady said...

Hi Dog Geek, thanks for the link on lost pets, looks like it does have a great deal of good information!

Donna, now I know YOU have photos of all your pets. I almost didn't put that line in since 99.9 percent of folks reading my blog also have pets and also post photos of all of them! But, you never know.

Hi Marnie, Thanks so much for visiting. Glad you enjoyed the story of Slim Jim. Come back any time!

Hi Dorothy! Hmmm, I might have to hunt around for a door mat like that! Mine has a cat with a mouse hanging out of his mouth with the phrase "Got Mouse?"

Anonymous said...

What a great story! I can't believe you haven't shared it before. It's amazing how many interesting cat stories you have! It was so sweet that the man came back and brought you cat food. It's great to hear these stories of people being nice to each other and to animals when we hear so much negative news all the time. Thanks! Cat59

possumlady said...

Hey Cat59, yes, I guess with all the other cats that I have permanently taken in, Slim Jim/Sammy was really just a blip on my radar screen, only housing him for 5 days at the most. It really took the other lost cat story to jog my memory. I mean I am almost 49 you know!!