A missing family cat who left his owners distraught after leaving home 14 months ago, has been found living the life of Riley at a pet food factory near his home.
The Mirror reports:
Two-year-old Norwegian Forest cat Clive disappeared from his home in December 2014 leaving owners Tanya and Jonathan Irons devastated.
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The couple, who have two-year-old daughter Elizabeth, put up posters around the neighbourhood and launched an appeal on Facebook but to no avail.
Clive was finally found on Wednesday by staff at a pet food factory two miles away, who had noticed treats had been going missing.
Now the family have been reunited with Clive – who has ballooned to almost twice his original size.
Tanya, a marketing manager, said: “Clive was nine months old when we lost him – and he was a lot smaller then.
“When we got him back we were shocked to see how big and fluffy he was. He’s obviously been living the life of Riley in that pet food factory.
“He used to be very naughty and liked to go outside a lot. We thought somebody must have taken him in as he’s such a lovely cat. We started a Facebook appeal and put up lost signs.
“We lost hope of ever seeing him again but on Wednesday we got a call out the blue from the vets saying he’d been found.
“ thought he must have being fed but it looks like he’s been feeding himself quite happily himself.
“He’s at home now, but I haven’t introduced him to his brothers, George and Leon. He was inseparable from them before, they were always cuddling and licking each other.
“I just hope he’s the same now. I’m going to start reintroducing them to each other in one-hour periods.
“We’ve had to tell our daughter Elizabeth he’s just a new cat, it’s too confusing for her to think he was lost. She’s very excited though.
“We heard Clive was a bit smelly when they caught him, but he seems fine now. He definitely recognises us, he’s just fatter now.
“I think he’s been enjoying himself feasting for the past year.
“I asked what he looked like and whether he was OK and was looking very well looked after.
“He’s wasn’ a big eater before, but he always had to eat very quickly before his brothers stole it. He was probably glad he didn’t have to compete with them to eat for once.
“He has a huge appetite now though. I’ve had to leave him with a big bucket of food, he just won’t stop eating.
“We’re not going to put him on a diet though, he’s just a bit rounder but he’s happy.”
Workers at Kennelgate Pet Superstore in Stapleford, Notts., were suspicious when they found evidence of a cat-burglar living in the store – and came up with a cunning plan to trap him.
They placed a trail of kitty treats leading up to a basket suspended over a pressure pad which would cause it drop leaving the culprit inside.
Clive was finally caught on Tuesday, when staff came in for the start of the day and saw the trap had been activated.
They took him to a vet who scanned his microchip which revealed he was registered to the Irons family, two miles away in Toton.
Production supervisor Diane Gaskill said: “I’ve been trying to catch him for weeks when I found out we had a cat living in the warehouse.
“I saw him run past me a couple of times and we found droppings.
“I set a cat trap last week night and I found him on Tuesday morning. He was hissing and spitting but he knew the game was up.
“We took him to the vets and we were able to get the mobile number of his owner. I rang her straight away – she couldn’t believe it.”
Retail director at the company, Colin Lewis, added: “It’s amazing. The warehouse is 20 thousand square foot of pet food. I think there’s been a few holes in some of the boxes.
“It was a team effort to get the cat, I think everyone had a go over the week before Diane found him.
“We kept finding cat poo and a few people said they saw him, but it took a while to get him.
“We got the trap from a cat rescue centre. It’s a cage – you put some food in it, then when the cat goes in there’s a pressure pad that shuts the door behind it.
“Clive only ate cat food in the factory, I think he thought he was living in a penthouse.”
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