My Cat is Missing

loki-lost

Loki is a male, neutered, orange and tan tabby.  He has a white spot under his neck/on his chest and bits of black on some whiskers, close to his nose.  He’s always been a runt, so his head is small and he is usually skinny.  If you live in Southwest Durham and think you may have seen him since 5/28, please email me at becca@yellow5labs.com.

My cat is missing.  He’s been missing for almost a week now and every day, I cry.  I miss my cat.  He is one of the most personable, friendly, mischievous cats that I’ve ever known.  It probably doesn’t help that we named him Loki after the Norse god of trickery.  Loki, you see, likes a challenge.

I tell myself I shouldn’t worry, because he is a wanderer.  Ever since his first breath of fresh air, at four months old, he has been focused on getting back outside if locked in.  He’s gotten close to turning doorknobs, even without a set of thumbs.  Now that I think of it, his struggle to be free actually started on the car ride home from the shelter, when he was barely eight weeks old and managed to finagle his way out of the cat carrier.  What did he do in the vast world of the car?  Climbed onto my lap and purred himself to sleep.  Loki hates cages of any size but he loves people.

It’s that love for two-legged creatures that has done him in on all previous escapes.  Loki, I’m sure, would call them adventures, all the way up to the time he convinces some friendly person that he’s hungry or needs a pet and they look at the number on his tag and turn him in to us, his captors.  We’ve picked him up from every subdivision within a mile, a restaurant and pharmacy down the road, even from hikers that he charmed on nearby trails.  Usually, these forays last two days, maybe three.  His sister was gone this long once, only to return the exact same time of day as she had disappeared a week earlier.  She’s never disappeared again.   I think she was stuck in a tree.  Loki is an adept tree climber.

The guilt I feel keeps building the longer we do not know where he is or if he is alive.  Inevitably, this column will bring at least one comment about how we really should keep the cats inside, since they will live longer lives and be protected from all harm.  I consider that, even though my family has never had indoor cats and they have all lived long, content lives before.  But I’ve also never had a cat that wanders like Loki does. If he comes back home, he will, at the very least, find himself bound in by an invisible fence, as I just can’t handle the worrying anymore. I let myself believe that he knows this, which is why he is on an extended bender.  His last hurrah, if you will.

I have considered that he may have been hit by a car, though I have not glimpsed any cat bodies on the sides of the roads and he is both tagged and microchipped, so we should be contacted if he is disposed of or ends up at the shelter or a vet’s office.  I’ve been to the shelter twice now, just to make sure, with no luck.

I’ve started to hate the birds in my yard that fool me with their chirping.  Loki has a jingle bell on his collar, contributed by one of his many admirers to make it easier for birds to avoid his attack.   These birds in our yard, for the first few seconds of a song, sound exactly like those bells and fill me with fast-fleeting hope that he is coming up the walkway.  I send them mental waves of malice each time one starts to trill.

I’ve made posters and put them on all the stop signs and grocery stores in our neighborhood.  When one of them disappears, I jump to conclusions, thinking that a kitty thief doesn’t want him to be found.  Of course, only the occasional sign disappears so foul play is not likely.

Yesterday, someone saw our sign and called.  Yes, they know Loki; he comes by all the time and plays with their own kitty, who is also very friendly.  No, they haven’t seen him since Thursday but strangely, their cat also disappeared that same afternoon.  Great.  Now I’m imagining a catnapper combing the neighborhoods for any cats friendly enough to climb in a stranger’s car.  What would they want with our cats?  People don’t eat cats in the U.S.  I’ve never seen someone proudly sporting a cat fur coat.  Do they want reward $$?  Well, I’ve put up enough signs to get a phone call from them, in that case.  My husband says if someone did call, we’d tell the police.  I say, we’d get Loki back first, then call the police.  Priorities.

More likely, though, the two cats are on a kitty joy ride, enjoying their time in the great wide open before hunger, thirst, or loneliness brings them back home or at least to someone else’s front step.  And then, the phone, which I have been glaring at for its silence, will ring and I will jot down the address with excitement and cry again, this time with relief, as I speed towards my cat.  He is missing but that does not mean he is gone.

17 comments for “My Cat is Missing

  1. George
    June 4, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    You actually think people don’t eat cats???

    • becca
      June 4, 2009 at 2:25 pm

      I know people do eat cats, I just don’t think they eat them often in the states! Loki’s on the skinny side so he hopefully wouldn’t be an appealing morsel! And thank you, Lyman, I am always looking for an orange streak as I drive around! I appreciate the extra pair of eyes.

  2. Lyman
    June 4, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    Hey, I’m sorry that Loki is gone, and I’m one of those people who leaves that comment you’re expecting about “you should keep your cats inside.” I’ll leave it at that, you’re suffering enough and I don’t want to make you feel any worse than you already do. I drive around the area a lot (as I live nearby). I’ll keep my eyes peeled for Loki, and I hope for the best.

  3. June 4, 2009 at 2:46 pm

    I’m so sorry Loki is missing. I will fwd your post on FB and Twitter. Hopefully someone has seen him!

    Good luck. I know this isn’t easy, but hang in there!

  4. zehra mirza
    June 14, 2009 at 4:20 pm

    I know exactly what you are going through, I had an adorable tuxedo male cat who was lost about 6 miles form home and has not come back since a month ago. Every day I pray for his safe return and continue to hope. The hope is what keeps me going and I hope that you will too. Never lose hope. God is great and He will send your cat back.

    • becca
      June 21, 2009 at 8:04 pm

      Thanks zehra, I am still hopeful Loki will come home, though it’s been 3 weeks now. We usually get at least 1 phone call a day from someone offering that they might have seen him recently so I have an idea of what area he’s in and keep taking walks, hoping I’ll come across him! I’ll continue to believe he’s just having fun in the nice weather unless I hear otherwise.

  5. zehra
    July 7, 2009 at 10:37 pm

    My beloved cat has still not come to me , inspite of praying and hoping for his return, I think that some nice girl took him and is probably taking care of him, but it breaks my heart to keep waiting and waiting for his safe return.Good lick to you too.

  6. Shannan
    August 20, 2009 at 10:41 pm

    Did your kitty come home? Our wonderful Basil Kitty is missing and the spot where he used to lay outside has dried blood. I am guessing he was injured and went to lie down in a safe place, but so many thoughts are going through my mind, all of which you mentioned in you note. I used to keep him indoors, but he found so much happiness outdoors playing with moths and climbing, etc…

    I keep crying praying that he will come home but I dread that he is gone.

  7. becca
    August 21, 2009 at 2:17 am

    Wow, Shannan, I would be terrified, too, if I’d found any signs of blood! But you must keep in mind that as long as you don’t know what happened, you might as well hope for the best! Loki has not come home and it’s almost three months now. I still picture him walking on up the walkway, meowing to come in and it’s possible–it’s always possible. Keep in mind any good qualities Basil might have and focus on those. Whenever I think of Loki and worry, I remind myself that he’s a great hunter and there’s plenty of fresh water to be had around here and that he’s always been able to make friends easily if he wants a treat! Likely, he has just adopted a new family for now and may or may not wander back home when he wants a new adventure. There’s been lots of potential sightings in our area but I’ve also learned that there are many similar-looking cats around, too, so who knows? You can only hope and do a thorough search and alert your neighbors to keep an eye out, too. I hope Basil comes home soon–I’ve read that some cats will go off alone if injured but will return after they’ve been able to heal some. Hopefully, that is the case with Basil.

  8. veronique
    September 17, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    im feelin pretty much the same too… my two cats went both missing, in the same weekend!! and its not usual for one of my cats to stray away from home for longer than one day… a week passed now and im worried that harm befell them! we’ll see

  9. shani
    October 17, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    Hey all, my 12 year old cat who also has cancer of the mandible went missing for over 4 weeks, I decided after 4 weeks that he was either dead from the cancer or had been killed somehow, I cried my eyes out and the very next day he was there when i got up, so hang in there as mine came back after all that time, goodluck all.

  10. October 17, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    🙁

    I hope he’s having a good ‘ol kitty time in the wild — terrorizing the birds.

    • The Gourmez
      November 6, 2009 at 2:38 pm

      That’s what I’m choosing to believe, Vipul! Loki can take care of himself, I know, so I’m hoping he continues doing that and having the time of his life!

  11. January 25, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    I am very excited to report that Loki is home, eight months later, found by his microchip! Thank you all so much for your comments and support. You can read about how he was found and his injuries here. Don’t ever give up hope that your pet might someday come home.

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