Sunday, August 1, 2010

FREE CAT



Saturday around 4:30 pm a new acquaintance, upon learning of the work of Hyde Park Cats said "I passed a carrier with a cat in it, near the grocery, with a 'free cat' sign on it." The two volunteers to whom this was said, who happened to be in the middle of an Indian-food cooking lesson, immediately drove to the grocery store. Two other volunteers had already come upon this cat, completely by chance. By this time the cat had been in the carrier, outside, for at least a couple hours.

Yes, that is correct. Right here in our neighborhood a cat had been abandoned in a carrier on a street corner, with no food or water, available to any dogfighter, drug addict, hoarder, etc. FREE CAT the sign said, with a phone number.

FREE CAT. Cowering in carrier, standing in his own pee.

Unbelievably, FREE CAT's "owner" answered the phone number left on the sign taped to the carrier. He even came over to meet us, apparently having dropped his child off at a playdate, to tell us that the cat is nine years old and the family is moving. Nine-year-old FREE CAT sat forlornly in the carrier without a meow. Former owner, who is a fully employed academic, seemed to think abandoning the cat like this was a good solution to his problem. He asked us if we'd prefer it had he brought the cat to a shelter where he might be humanely euthanized. (Why yes! we would indeed prefer that!) He also said "if you're going to scold me, maybe I won't give him to you."

The cat carrier was quickly stowed inside my car and driven to a safe location. He didn't ask to say goodbye.



Harper (the name of the street he was abandoned on) is a ginger-champagne male. He has lived with a feline companion. He is now in a calm and loving fosterhome and so far is quiet and submissive; no aggression even in a scary situation. He enjoys catnip and brushing. And petting. He is a good boy. We are seeking a loving forever home for this valiant gentleman.

15 comments:

lilolady said...

This is so callous and selfish I cannot even summon words to describe my distress.

Ruth said...

Harper is a lovely boy - he purred for an hour on Sunday when I stroked and brushed him. So within less than 24 hours of this trauma, he showed willing to trust humans again. It was so hard putting him into the carrier to go to his fosterhome - not because of him - he was utterly co-operative - and even though I knew it was going to be great for him from here on in, I kept on thinking that he must have wondered where he was going this time ... But by now Harper knows that he was going indoors to be loved and cared for by his new fostermom. Welcome to HPC Harper.

Mireille said...

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Totally irresponsible and despicable. People like that should never have pets (or children for that matter).

Martha said...

My husband, who is also a "fully employed academic" thought that Harper's owner should be put in jail. Agreed!

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful cat!! And a sad story but with a happy ending. Any idea what happened to Harper's "feline companion"? Wonder what street corner HE is sitting on -- or was he dumped? This "human"'s department head should know about this.

Ruth said...

Re Harper's sibling - he said he planned to take her to a shelter - she is a bit older and on thyroid medication - so he didn't think anyone would take her off the street. But of course if she goes to a no-kill shelter she will be euthanaized, so I asked him to contact me before dropping her off just in case we could do anything.

Catherine said...

I will take the sister if needed. Just let me know,
Catherine

Susan said...

Thanks HPC for helping this poor cat - after securing the second cat the owner should be reported. It is against the law in Illinois to abandon a cat or any animal.

Anonymous said...

I just love how "disposable" people consider their pets. Shame on this owner for dumping his sweet cat like this, especially someone "educated" enough to know better! He doesn't deserve to own pets OR children. I hope he contacts you before he dumps his female cat too. Thank you for helping Harper. It never ceases to amaze me how trusting animals are, even when they've been betrayed by their "owners".

Greg said...

This "academic" ought to be ashamed of himself. However, from your description of him, he will no doubt sit at home in his smug self-satisfaction that he's "right" and everyone else is an idiot because he has a degree and they don't.

All the education in the world can't make someone a decent human being.

Lilithcat said...

That man is evil. Harper deserves better, and I'm glad he's getting it. My only sadness is that I'll bet there's a child crying over the loss of a beloved pet.

bundeleh said...

It is a class A misdemeanor to abandon any animal in Illinois. Facilities exist in this city for relinquishment of animals: Animal Care and Control will take your animal no questions asked.

Kyle said...

This is utterly repulsive. And how genius of him to leave his phone number - I hope HPC uses this phone number to report this man to the proper authorities. If you don't want to, I certainly will!

Anonymous said...

What's the latest on Harper? Can't stop thinking about him and that disgusting "human". And, what about Harper's former feline friend? Anybody know what happened to her?
Poor kitty.

Ruth said...

I visited Harper yesterday and the day before - he is doing so well at his new foster home. He is shy at first but can be coaxed out. He loves to rub himself on the furniture and on you; he loves to be petted. He even let me pick him up to hug him. He has a beautiful coat and the sweetest coy demeanour - he strikes me as very young for his age! What Harper really wants is to be loved, so whoever adopts him will be amply rewarded with a dedicated darling.
No news on his sister I'm afraid.