On December 10th my mother-in-law's beloved indoor black cat Piccolo somehow managed to scoot out of her house undetected. Since then, she has distributed hundreds upon hundreds of fliers in her neighborhood, at pet supply shops and vet offices. She went door-to-door asking about him. She answered countless false-alarm reports of black cat sightings. She set live traps and caught mean strays. She put out food and water that was eaten by raccoons and rabbits. She called the micro-chip place and visited all the animal shelters. No Piccolo.
It's been heartbreaking to watch. I love our dog so much and I can only imagine how gut-wrenching it would be if she went missing. It makes me cry just thinking about it. The windchill here was in the negative digits last week and we had 15 inches of snow. It's been a month since Piccolo disappeared. I was hopeful that he'd just been taken in by a stranger, but I honestly feared the worst.
Tonight Piccolo is at home. A neighbor three doors away spotted him crawling underneath their deck and when Barb appeared and called to him he came out to her. He evidently spent the last four and a half weeks huddled near the relative warmth of the neighbor's house and was too scared to venture away. He was dehydrated and thin, but he should be fine. When I talked to her, he was cuddled under some warm blankets with a hot water bottle and his grateful owner and the dog nearby on the couch.