I wanted to share the story of Spot the cat with you if you have not heard me talk about it, seen the video, or read my book.
Spot, the beloved pet of one of my clients, Charles, ran away during the move when we sold his house. Charles was distraught because winter was right around the corner and feared the cat would not survive the cold weather. It was heartbreaking for him and for me to see him worried. I have pets so I know how a pet is a member of the family and can be very devastating if a pet is lost. The worst part about the situation was that he moved to Wisconsin so it was almost impossible for him to catch Spot. I did not live in the neighborhood either so I knew this would not be an easy thing to do. The cat was also very fearful of humans when it was in the outside environment so it was not like anyone could go up to the cat and pick her up.
So I did what anyone else would do when they have a lost pet, my team and I put up hundreds of flyers throughout the neighborhood and surrounding neighborhoods offering a $500 reward for Spot’s capture. I figured this perhaps would motivate younger kids to help since $500 is a lot of money to anyone. We also went door to door and talked to people about Spot and the reward we were offering. We also sent out over 2,000 mailers with Spot’s picture and the information for the reward with my personal cell phone.
Every couple days I would get a call from someone with a lead on Spot. Unfortunately, many people were not comfortable with putting out food every day because they either had dogs and were scared the dog would go into the trap or they were worried about the food attracting coyotes (coyotes were seen from time to time here). One neighbor introduced me to a lady in the area that volunteered for the cat shelter. She told me that she had traps that were specifically designed to catch cats that would not harm the cat. She even showed me how to use the trap and set it up. She informed me that we had to put food out in the morning and take it down before dark because it might attract coyotes, raccoons, possums, skunks, and other nocturnal animals. This meant that whoever we got to volunteer to help us would have to do a lot of work each day (set up the trap in the morning, put the food in the trap, take the food out of the trap at night, and close the trap at night).
One of the calls came from a good Samaritan by the name of Judy which turned into a great lead. She thought that Spot would come into her back yard but wasn’t sure it was the right cat. She described Spot in detail and sure enough, the description fit the bill. Since we had a really good lead, she put food out every day to attract Spot. For the first few days Spot would only eat the food outside the trap. Eventually Spot became more comfortable with the trap and would eat further and further in the trap. Just as Spot was becoming very comfortable with the trap Judy had a trip planned to Michigan so she would not be able to put out the food every day and take the trap down at night. I did not want to disturb Spots daily habit of coming around the house for food so I had one my assistants go every morning to set up, go during the day to check on things, and go at night to take it down. Spot even started becoming comfortable with my assistant being there.
Below is a photo my assistant took of Spot in the back yard while putting food out each day.
After a few days of putting food out, we caught Spot. We immediately loaded Spot into my car, started driving towards Wisconsin, and called Charles. We met Charles at a motel in Wisconsin and he was thrilled to see her. He never thought he was going to see her again so he was ecstatic. His wife was also overjoyed and almost in disbelief we caught Spot.
Click the video below to see how happy Charles was to see Spot.
Note: If you were curious about the $500 reward, it was donated to charity. I gave the reward to Judy since we would not have been able to catch Spot without her help and she donated all of the money to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society which is a wonderful cause. Visit www.lls.org to learn more and donate.
A fact I haven’t told many people until now is that I also found a boyfriend for Spot. Not only am I a real estate agent and contractor, but I am also a cat matchmaker😊. A stray cat started coming around my house, so I started feeding him since I’m a sucker for animals. He was a friendly cat that even liked getting his belly rubbed. I couldn’t let him go without a home so I reached out to Charles again to see if he wanted a companion for Spot and after I sent him this picture, he also adopted “Snowball”. Well that’s the name I gave him anyway. One of the many reasons I love what I do! I hope you enjoyed this story as much as I enjoyed helping a friend!