They rehomed our missing cat...now new owners won’t give her back
WHEN a heartbroken five-year-old girl was told her missing pet cat had been found safe and well she was overjoyed.
But now her mother has been forced to issue an emotional appeal after the cat was mistaken for a stray and rehomed – and the new owner has refused to return it.
Deborah Cameron’s tortoiseshell Precious went missing at the end of January from her home in Cumbernauld, Lanarkshire.
After weeks of searching, the family were overjoyed when they discovered she had been found and was being cared for by an animal charity in Glasgow.
But when Miss Cameron contacted Cats Protection they said that the animal had been adopted.
Miss Cameron and her five-year-old daughter Khianna became worried after Precious failed to return one morning.
The 35-year-old beautician contacted vets and her local Cats Protection branch in Falkirk as well as the head office.
Two weeks later, the family saw a post on social media stating Precious had been found by Harvey’s Army, a volunteer group that reunites pets with their owners.
According to Miss Cameron, Precious was mistakenly picked up as a stray less than a from her home and taken to a Cats Protection branch in Glasgow. When no microchip was found, she was put up for adoption.
But when Miss Cameron contacted the charity, staff told her that Precious had been rehomed only days earlier and nothing could be done.
Miss Cameron said: ‘It’s been awful. I have four cats and they usually all go out at night and come back in the morning but when I opened the door the day she went missing there was only the three there.
‘I was frantic and I called all the vets around my area, Cats Protection in Stirling, Falkirk and the branch in Stepps but they said no cat had been handed in matching the description.
‘I was then told that a lady from Harvey’s Army had picked her up and took her to a safe place and the following day they gave it to Cats Protection in Glasgow.’
Miss Cameron posted messages on Glasgow social media groups and established were Precious was.
She said: ‘At this point I was so happy thinking I was going to get Precious back.’
However, Miss Cameron was then told the charity no longer had her pet.
Miss Cameron added: ‘I was crying my eyes out when they told me. I begged the woman at Cats Protection to call the new owners and ask for the cat back.
‘They came back and said the new owners weren’t giving her back. What I would say to the new owner is please find it in your heart, for my daughter, to give her back.’
A spokesman for Cats Protection said: ‘This is a distressing time for everyone concerned and we understand the upset a situation like this can cause.
‘Cats Protection keeps stray cats for a minimum of two weeks before finding them a new home, to allow reasonable time for owners to claim them. As no one came forward to claim her, she was adopted by a new family on February 26.
‘We were contacted by Harvey’s Army on March 10 to say they had seen a post on Facebook with a picture of the cat they had brought to us. They put the owner in touch with us so we could explain the situation.
‘We have contacted the new owners to ask whether they would be prepared to give the cat back, but they decided to keep her.
‘Unfortunately, we have no powers to compel the new owners to return Precious.
‘This unfortunate incident highlights how important it is for all pet cats to be microchipped.’
‘Crying my eyes out when they told me’
Appeal: Khianna with Precious and, inset, a social media post highlighting plight Picked up: Cat was thought to be a stray