Chrissy's Family Wants Justice and Wants Her Back Home
Chrissy was an indoor cat who slipped out and went missing. The local SPCA said her family did not deserve to get her back, after a microchip scan identified them, and let the person who found Chrissy adopt her. The family say they are responsible pet lovers who do not deserve to be treated this way.
Chrissy was an indoor cat who slipped out, like many do. The local SPCA let the family who found her keep Chrissy, though a microchip proved that she belonged with Rita Beach and her family. Rita says the Chester county SPCA dismissed her as an irresponsible pet parent because her cat got out once. The family say they are responsible pet owners who never dreamed they would be treated this way. They say they are animal lovers for whom Chrissy was a special and beloved family member who has been unjustly taken away from them.
The following story is a guest post by Rita Beach.
Chester County SPCA stole my cat
I adopted Chrissy in 2003, I picked her because she had been there the longest; she was about 2 when I got her. Through the years she had some issues: she would sneeze all the time, she had a skin problem and would get scabs and her fur would fall out. The vet said it all had to do with allergies. She didn’t like carpet or rugs, so she would pee on them. We replaced all of our carpet with hardwood floors and removed our rugs from our bathroom floor, just to keep Chrissy happy.
She was an indoor cat but she snuck out a few times. She would hide under the deck in the corner where I couldn’t get her, and I would spend hours sitting there with a can of Fancy Feast trying to coax her out. It always worked and she would run back in with her brother Winky and 4 dogs siblings. Like my children, she wanted to be an only child, but since there are so many unwanted pets in the world I always felt like I had to do my share and other people’s share since not everyone has a pet. But she always got along with my dogs and cats.
In June 2011 she snuck outside; we looked everywhere and we really thought she would come home. We put up posters, asked neighbors & told the police. Months went by and no Chrissy, we thought the worst; a fox or something got her.
On January 16, 2012 I got a voice mail from a very nice person at the Chester County SPCA who told me that they’d found “my cat”, and to call back. I was so happy and called her right back. She told me someone found her and took her to the vet and they found her embedded micro chip (that proves ownership to me!). She said that this person wanted to adopt her; I said that unless I talk to them I wouldn’t give up ownership of Chrissy.
What if they had her since June and made it impossible for her to return home, and what will they do when she starts peeing all over their house? She was my baby and we adapted to her “princess like ” behavior. This nice person told me that she would have the person who found her call me or the SPCA would call me back.
I soon found out that the “nice person” turned out to be a “nice liar”. That was Monday and by Wednesday I didn’t get a call, so I called the SPCA. I said who I was and inquired about my cat, and it turned out that I was speaking to Jill Roxbury. Right away she rudely informed me that “the cat was adopted into a loving home”; my response was that she had a loving home. She then told me that since I let the cat outside I couldn’t have her back! Really? Is it illegal to let your cat outside? Sorry, but I had a 5 year old son who may not have shut the door all the way, do you want to take him from me too?
My husband called later and talked to the director, Kathryn Sippel. She told him that they had a meeting about the situation, then told him that they wanted to ensure that the cat didn’t end up at the SPCA again. Really? I had the cat for 9 years and she got lost one time, and aren’t they there to help reunite owners with their pets? Well, we got a lawyer and are taking them to Civil Court in Chester County.
We aren’t some dirt balls that think that animals are disposable. I work with an animal rescue and fostered animals and found them homes (or kept them). I had a dog shipped to me from Indiana from Craigslist because she was in a high kill shelter and had one week to live. I sent them money and they sent her to me a few years ago.
My husband recently retired after 34 years of being a police officer and he dealt with the SPCA many times when they found lost dogs. He just assumed that they tried to get the owners reunited with their lost pets. Boy, he was wrong!
I would never have thought that this could happen to us. We have jobs, live in a nice house, have children and take good care of all of our animals, but because one person decided that I am an unfit pet owner because my indoor cat got lost one time, I don’t deserve to have her back after I took good care of her for 9 years. If I was such a bad pet why didn’t they ever send anyone to check on our other animals?
Thank you for reading my story.
The Heartbroken Beach Family in Chester County PA
This weekend, Rita will place a flyer in hundreds of mailboxes in her area. It reads as follows:
Have You Seen Me?
Chrissy our gray tortoiseshell colored cat escaped from our loving home
last year, Granger Lane & Caln Mtg House Road. We looked everywhere
for her but just couldn’t find her. January 16, 2012 the SPCA called and
said that someone found our girl after they took her to the vet where they
found the embedded ID Chip that the SPCA input in her in 1993 when we
adopted her. I quickly told them that we would reimburse the nice person
who found her for whatever expenses they incurred.
The SPCA said the person who found her would call me (since they still
had her) or they would call me back. 1 1/2 days went by after no phone call
I called them. Their very rude employee, Jill Roxbury informed me that
“the cat” was adopted into a loving home (by the person who found her)
even though she already had a very loving home. No reasoning with her so
I hung up. We have been going around and around with them ever since.
We hired an attorney and the SPCA’s only response was a nasty phone call
to us saying that since we let our cat outside we would never get her back.
(she was an indoor only cat but it isn’t against the law to let your cat
outside). Our next step is Civil Court and we are requesting a subpoena for
all of the paperwork pertaining to Chrissy.
If the SPCA would have checked, we work with an animal rescue, I foster
animals, have found them homes or sometimes keep them. We had a dog
shipped to us off of Craigslist from IN from a high kill shelter that had 1
week to live. We are not careless pet owners and deserve to have the cat
that we took care of and loved for almost 9 years.
If you have seen Chrissy or know who adopted her (someone in Caln Twp)
please help us.
Rita has set up a Facebook group, Chester County SPCA stole my cat. She would welcome anyone who is supportive and would like to join.
Editor’s note: The Chester County SPCA issued a warning to cat owners to keep their cats inside a few months ago, due to a rash of cat killings in the area. Chrissy got out and went missing in June, before that warning was made. While we appreciate the SPCA wanting to ensure that cats are kept safe, we also know that, unless it is caged, any indoor cat can find their moment and get outside.