Sunday, December 17, 2006

I love a happy ending

Yesterday morning I realized I hadn't seen my Zori cat for more than a day.  I was worried because the new kitty is very aggressive toward her and I thought she may have decided to leave home. She has the ability to come and go through the doggy door but she doesn't spend much time outdoors during the winter accept near the door on our back patio.  The yard is fully fenced and she is somewhat lame from her two broken legs so I had no expectation that she would leave the yard. 
When I realized I hadn't seen her for over a day we had 3 or 4 inches of fresh snow on the ground and the only prints in the snow were the dog's. I went outside and called for her and looked under the evergreen trees in our yard, but she was no where to be found.  My heart was breaking.  There is only one little place she could have made it through the fence but that was into backyard neighbor's yard and that was just out of the question. They have a young boxer dog who would never allow a cat into their yard!
I could see no reason to go door to door looking for her because she is a shy cat and wouldn't let anyone approach her. My heart was breaking and all I could do about it was cry.  My daughter had a different opinion and was anry with me which hurt even more.  
I was getting ready to go out this morning and thought I would take another look outside. We have about 8 to 12 inches of snow now and I considered she could have gotten hurt and gone under the "in-ground" trampoline for shelter. If she was hurt maybe she couldn't get out.  The snow completely blanketed it and maybe that prevented me from hearing her. 
I walked across the patio to the edge of the snow and called for her. Then I listened. I called again and listened again and then I heard a very very faint cry.  I thought at first I imagined it but I walked into the snow toward the trampoline and called again. Again I heard a faint cry and I called once more. This time the cry was louder and definitely my cat. I cannot even describe how I felt. If you are owned by an animal you know they are family and hearing her cry was like hearing a ghost come back to life by that point.
I knew the cry was not coming from under the trampoline but from our neighbor's yard.  If she was in that yard and still alive, that was a miracle in my book. I ran to the spot in the fence that I could imagine she might go through and called her some more. She was definitely in another yard and her call was strong, but where she was I had no idea. This area is where two neighbors' properties come together at my cyclone fence, like a T intersection where my basketball pad ends. The neighbor with the dog has no fence, but his next door neighbor has a wood fence which prevented my seeing into his yard.  It appeared that part of his fence was leaning over enough that Zori could have entered his yard through the dog's yard.  I could hear her crying but couldn't see her or identify exactly where the cry was coming from. 
Enter my white knight in less than shining armour..... 
Mark trudged through the snow with a ladder and climbed the fence jumping into the neighbor's yard.  He walked a little way into their yard and determined that Zori was in their shed.  He opened the shed and found her - HOORAY!!  As I said, she is a shy cat and it took a little for him to get to her, but he finally came to the fence with her and passed her through to me.  She was warm and dry despite our weather, but very anxious.  When I got to the door she pushed off me and ran to hide.  I was just extremely happy because my baby was back home, safe and warm, where she belongs. 
I had some errands to run but when I got back we spent some time bonding - her purring and me rubbing her furry soft belly - and all is right again in my world.  She's been keeping an eye on me the rest of the afternoon, as if I was the one that was missing.  We've kept Tony in the basement, he's sleeping peacefully on Alyssa's bed, so Zori can have some peace.  I am so so happy to have her back home!!!!!

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