Fa­mi­ly cat mis­sing af­ter fi­res

Knysna-Plett Herald - - Letters | Briewe - – K­ris­ty Kol­berg

The re­cent Knys­na fi­res ha­ve been fil­ling the news with tra­gic sto­ries of de­at­hs, gre­at los­ses and ter­ri­ble de­structi­on. The re­per­cus­si­ons we­re just as se­ve­re.

W­hen ha­ving to e­va­cu­a­te their ho­me, most pe­op­le would ta­ke t­hings that are most de­ar to them and e­a­sy to car­ry. In the ca­se of Knys­na Ter­ra­ce guest­hou­se o­w­ner Mau­r­een Bar­nard, this was her lap­top, cel­lp­ho­ne, hand­bag – and the 13-y­e­ar-old fa­mi­ly cat Mu­su.

“My mom pho­ned me at 18:00 on Wed­nes­day. She was fran­tic. T­hey we­re being e­va­cu­a­ted from their ful­ly book­ed guest­hou­se w­he­re t­hey al­so li­ved – a hou­se full of all their be­lon­gings, t­hings that mo­ney can ne­ver re­pla­ce. I told her to ta­ke the cat first,” their daug­h­ter, An­toi­net­te Ni­co­la­ou, told the Ge­or­ge He­rald.

By this ti­me Bar­nard was al­re­a­dy out­si­de with a hys­te­ri­cal Mu­su. “She was frig­h­te­ned. S­cre­a­ming and scra­t­ching. We had no choi­ce but to put her in a po­li­ce van whi­le our gue­sts we­re e­va­cu­a­ting. We had no ti­me to grab her car­rier or any ot­her be­lon­gings,” Bar­nard said. “We lost e­ver­y­thing.” On­ce the gue­sts we­re e­va­cu­a­ted Bar­nard went back to fe­tch Mu­su, but the po­li­ce­man al­re­a­dy dro­ve a­way.

“Sin­ce that e­ve­ning we ha­ve been trying to find Mu­su and the po­li­ce­man. W­hen we finally got hold of the po­li­ce­man, who is from Ge­or­ge, he said the­re was no cat in his van. We can now on­ly as­su­me that so­meo­ne had o­pe­ned the vehi­cle’s door and she jum­ped out,” she said. “In the me­an­ti­me, my pa­rents’ guest­hou­se is bur­ned do­wn. The de­va­sta­ti­on of lo­sing e­ver­y­thing, and e­ven mo­re so not kno­wing w­he­re our be­lo­ved cat is, is un­be­a­ra­ble at ti­mes. You mo­ve be­t­ween ho­pe and he­ar­ta­che se­ver­al ti­mes a day.” Mu­su was last seen out­si­de Ar’De­co guest­hou­se in Old Ca­pe Ro­ad, Knys­na, on T­hurs­day 15 Ju­ne.

The fa­mi­ly has not stop­ped look­ing for her. “We ha­ve put her pic­tu­re and sto­ry on va­ri­ous Facebook fo­rums for mis­sing a­ni­mals. We ha­ve hi­red pe­op­le with y­e­ars of ex­pe­rien­ce wor­king with cats, ar­ran­ged a mass pray­er and e­ven con­tacted a psy­chic who works with the po­li­ce to find mis­sing per­sons.

“We will not stop look­ing until we find her. We will not gi­ve up on her.”

Se­ver­al a­ni­mal wel­fa­re or­ga­ni­sa­ti­ons from a­cross the Gar­den Rou­te as­sis­ted in fin­ding and re­lo­ca­ting pets af­ter the fi­re.

* If you ha­ve seen Mu­su, or know w­he­re she mig­ht be, p­le­a­se p­ho­ne 082-447-7767.

Knys­na Ter­ra­ce guest­hou­se was one of the ma­ny buil­dings in Knys­na de­stroy­ed by the ra­ging fi­re on Ju­ne 7. Mu­su, the o­w­ners’ 13-y­e­ar-old cat, went mis­sing du­ring their e­va­cu­a­ti­on from the guest­hou­se. Her fa­mi­ly has not stop­ped se­ar­ching for her.

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