Missing Cat Turns Up 6 Months and 280 Miles Later

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Ash was adopted as a kitten and had only been with his petdad a month before he went missing. Thanks to a microchip and the person who picked Ash up and brought him to the SPCA, the cat will be reunited with his petdad soon.

For the second time in two weeks the Wellington, NZ SPCA has been part of  the story when a cat made news.

Sabrina Gets A Home, from the end of May, tells of the unusual occurrence when a dirty, severely matted and flea and mite infested calico Persian cat came to the SPCA’s Newtown centre.

The SPCA says it is rare for Persians to come in as strays.  Sabrina got a shave and a cleanup while at the shelter and had a waiting list of willing adopters lined up after a tv news feature on her story.

Sabrina was adopted to a woman who had seen her when she was a stray and put her name in first, as soon as the cat was finally captured and rescued.



This time, it’s the Kapiti branch of the Wellington SPCA, in Waikanae in the news, along with a couple of questions … how did a young cat get from Hamilton to Te Horo, and what was he doing for the 6 months he was missing?

Ash is a handsome young grey tabby adopted from the Hamiltion SPCA as a kitten by Louie Sinclair. Ash went missing only a month after his adoption. He went out one day was was not seen again. Louie put up 200 posters in his effort to find Ash but got no leads.

Fast forward six months, and a concerned resident brought Ash to the Waikanae SPCA on Monday after finding him wandering around in Te Horo, near state Highway One. He has traveled 450 kilometers, or 280 miles. Fortunately, Ash had been microchipped, so a quick scan identified him and the shelter contacted Louie.

No one has any knowledge of how Ash made the long trek but it is thought that he somehow hitched a ride in a truck or trailer or the engine compartment of a car.  He may also have been taken by someone.

As luck would have it, Louie is moving to Johnsonville, just north of Wellington, in two weeks, and will be able to pick up Ash on his way there.

Making light of the matter while bouyed with the joy and relief at learning Ash is safe, Louie said, “I reckon he just wanted to come and check the place out for me. It’s like he knew I’d end up down here.”

The SPCA hopes Ash’s story will serve as a reminder to people to get their pets microchipped. With only about 20 percent of cats brought to the SPCA having microchips, most are never reunited with their families again, and the SPCA would like to see that change. They are planning a microchipping drive in the near future.


Handsome Ash is shown in the photo above with Kapiti SPCA manager Peter McCallum.

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