Lost cat returns

Published 9:06 am Friday, January 30, 2015

It seems each and every time we move we lose or misplace something along the way.

I related our move to another part of town in last week’s column. Luckily, we didn’t lose anything of great value, but we did lose track of something that is very important to us nonetheless.

Approximately five days before moving out for good, we let Smoke out of the house late at night to do his business. He’s a 7-year-old tomcat, and I guess he decided to do what tomcats do. He didn’t return that night. Or the next morning, either.

By the time we were prepared to move for good the following Wednesday Smoke had still not returned.

We moved into the new house nearby and continued to go by the former residence every opportunity that came along to see if we could find him. That process continued for five days. We’d go down the alleyways and side streets calling his name but saw no trace of him. If was like he had disappeared from the face of the earth.

We figured if we were ever going to find him he’d be found somewhere close by unless something untoward had happened to him. My fear was that a dog got to him, or he was shot by an irate homeowner or run over in traffic.

It’s amazing what kind of thoughts run through your mind whenever something like this happens. It leaves you with an empty feeling in the pit of your stomach. You realize he’s out there possibly hungry and thirsty, and you’ll do almost anything within reason to get him back. He’s really just a big baby who likes to eat and then curl up in a ball and sleep. He looks menacing enough but is real skittish. He weighs a little over 10 pounds and has those piercing, dark green eyes that look like saucers. He will let you know whenever he is hungry. He is impatient if we’re slow in feeding him.

While I was at work on Jan. 26, Gail went by the old house and spotted him on one of the nearby backroads. She called out his name. She said Smoke stopped dead in his tracks and looked at her. I guess he figured he was caught doing something that he wasn’t supposed to be doing. He likes to roll over on his back when he’s apparently glad to see you. She said Smoke did just that, but was spooked three or four times by someone coming out of their house whenever she tried to pick him and put him in the car.

Since Smoke is so big and so skittish, I don’t see how Gail managed to get him in the car at all. But she did.

I’m sure having Paco in the car didn’t help matters at all. Paco is our new addition to the family. He is a 5-year-old Chihuahua we got from someone who was going to put him down because they could no longer take care of him. Paco is a live wire for sure. To his credit, he is pretty much calm and housebroken. He will let you know whenever he needs to go out.

Smoke was missing for about nine days. When I got home, Smoke’s big green eyes were there to greet me. He was a sight for sore eyes indeed. I had already figured this was one cat that we would never see again.

Our other cats have adjusted well to their new surroundings. They are all curious and like to explore their new neighborhood.

Smoke has been staying close to home this time around. Whenever he does need to go out to do his business, he does it and hurries back in the house.

Hopefully he has learned his lesson. I’ll bet he doesn’t realize how lucky he is.

Randy Hammons is a staff writer for the Daily News. He can be reached by calling 985-732-2565 or by email at randy.hammons@thebogalusadailynews.com.