Peggy of Virginville, Pennsylvania documented her missing cat Daisy's recovery with the help of animal communicator Hilary Renaissance.
Joined the family: 2005
Born: around 9/14/2003
Daisy joins the family
From the time I found Daisy, she was sure to be special. Daisy was an outside kitty for the first year or two of her life. But being outside led to her getting a really bad cold – and she looked miserable. She was sitting on the feed box that is outside on the porch and I said to her, “…if you want to feel better, you will have to let me pick you up and then I’ll get you some help.” I couldn’t believe it, she sat still and let me pick her up. I got her into a kennel and took her to the vet. It turned out that she not only had a cold, but she had also picked up lice somewhere. This would require her to be quarantined and to get a bath once a week for a month. Well, now that should be fun…a fairly wild cat, with claws, getting a bath! She had her own special room and got to go between Maryland and Pennsylvania every week to get bathed on a Saturday. She quickly improved and then it was time to get introduced to the other kitties. But she had calmed down pretty much and was pretty good at getting a bath. She was about 2 years old when we brought her in. That created a bond that could not be broken.
After being picked up by the other kitties, she became so afraid that she now has her own room during the day. She sleeps on her bed (pillow), and has a window and her own toys. She loves her room. When I get home, she is usually sleeping in the middle of the bed, and she rolls over and I rub her belly and she looks so happy! However, during the time of being picked up she started to sleep with us, to be protected, She comes every night, snuggles as close as possible and likes to be covered up and warm! So you can understand how special she is. (She is a favorite kitty!)
On 16 Jan 2012, we decided to have Daisy and Sandy declawed. She is older and I was worried about that, but she has recovered. She also is missing most of her teeth. Over time they have fallen out, but she still can eat!
Losing and Searching for Daisy
4 May 2012 – I was getting the kennel out of the car in Pennsylvania, late at night after driving back from back from Maryland. It broke, dropped to the ground, the lid opened, and she got out. She was really scared and took off running. She kept running and wouldn’t stop, most likely because she saw the other cats outside. They always say not to chase them, because that just makes them more afraid, so I was trying to keep up with her. She ran along the back of the house and that was the last place I saw her. She turned the corner and was gone. It was too dark to find her.
Day 2: The next day, I started to look for her again. I looked for her all the next day. In the morning I thought I saw her near the pond – a white cat started running towards me, then stopped, turned around and ran away. I think it was her – but I’m not sure since there are two other white ones and one is the same size and looks just like her, and that one was sitting on the porch. I hope she comes home soon. I am so depressed and worried about her, especially since she has no claws and no teeth. I’m not sure how she will survive.
Day 3 (Sunday) and no sign of her. I have put up flyers and gave out flyers around the neighborhood. Anyone who had a paper box or other box received one. I don’t know where she can be. I have called her and walked around the neighborhood. I have read so much on the internet about finding lost cats, how long they can survive, and how long until they come back, that now has me worried and sad.
Day 4 (Monday). I stayed home from work to keep looking for her. Someone told me to call the local vets, and shelters and make sure that they are looking for her. That is really hard for me to do. I am so emotional and can’t talk about her without crying. People have also suggested putting out a live trap. So I did. Since I have the outside cats around, who are always hungry, I have caught the black one, a striped one, and a raccoon! The cats were bouncing off the sides of the cage when I got close so I thought it would be a whole lot of fun getting the raccoon out. I carefully reached down and opened the cage….and he sat there, and sat there, and would not come out of the cage….I had to dump him out. I also put little cups of food around…they were gone, but I don’t think it was Daisy getting any of it!
I also put flyers in the boxes on Virginville Road. And now, we have to go to Maryland, without Daisy. This is really hard. I have read that they usually come back in a few days. If not, sometimes a week. So, I am hoping when I get back next weekend, she will show up. I have done about everything I can. I even put a flyer up in the post office.
This really hurts to lose her, and I should have known, I had a premonition before I left. I had a thought that the locks were going to open and I checked them before we left. Could I have prevented this? Did I check them here at home? I see myself going through the stages of grief.
The following week, I received two calls from neighbors as a result of the flyers. One from Anita who said she saw a white cat watching her chickens. And one from Lori. Both live on Virginville Road behind us. It is possible that she doubled back and went up the hill. Anita invited me up to walk around her house to see if she was there. I did. They have some really neat trails behind their house, but as much fun as that was, there were no white kitties to be found. But I did find a patch of wild daisies (the flowers)! I continued to take walks in the morning to see if I can find her and met another neighbor who was walking her dog. So I am really using my new I-phone. I am so thankful that I have it.
It is now the next weekend (2nd weekend since she is lost) and no sign of her. I am going outside as much as I can; still taking walks, calling her, being out in the garden, sitting outside as much as possible. Maybe tomorrow…I’ve called Mary Jo and Marie and they have been a great help in trying to find her. They are looking around as much as possible too. On the second week, Marie thought she saw her down by the sheds on a Wednesday. She was sure there were 4 white cats on the property, so it could have been her. I was hopeful that, if it was her, she would hang around until the weekend. I got home, and she wasn’t there. I am rapidly losing hope – what an emotional rollercoaster.
By the third weekend, I am pretty much giving up hope that I will ever see her again. I am still looking though, and every time I see the little white boy cat outside, I make sure it’s not her. It is now to the point where both the little girl and little boy outside, are starting to believe their names are Daisy because I always chase them and call Daisy! That is so, not right, for the little boy! But he usually stops and looks anyway as if to say, “I’m not Daisy”. And even though hope is waning, still, every little movement draws your attention, and you keep looking for her. So I am up early on Saturday morning and I hear the show Animal Radio on the radio, and they are talking to the animal communicator. So, I started to research this on the Internet…maybe it will work – but I am really skeptical.
Help from a Distance:
As the 4th week goes by, I found a lady named Hilary Renaissance in Seattle that has a website with a lot of stories about lost kitties that have been found through her efforts. Many of them have been found after a few days, one was a dog that was found after 18 months and the one that really caught my eye was a cat that had been found after 4 weeks. Ah, more hope. So, I kept thinking about this all week. It was $110 for a lost pet consultation. I was talking to a friend of mine at work, who said, “if it were your child, would you do it”? That rang pretty true with me, Daisy is like my child! I sent it to Michael and thought he would never go for it…both of us were skeptical, but what did we have to lose at this point. So I made an appointment with Hilary on Friday, June 1 at 5pm. She requested photos of Daisy (I sent her two) and a hand drawn map of the area. I drew a map on a piece of paper and took a photo of it and sent it to heI talked to Hilary at 5 pm est to make sure she understood the map and she explained what would happen. She would meditate for an hour and call me back, she would ask Daisy questions about: what she sees, where she is, how far she traveled, etc. and would call me back with the results. At 6 pm she called me back with these results:
Daisy is alive
She was scared by a raccoon, skunk or other 4 legged animal
She took off and is about ¾ mile to 1 ¼ mile away
She is near a man made ditch or ravine
It looks like they were digging pipes – construction pipes
There is a utility box or tool box nearby
There is a footbridge for walking over and it it dirty or
There could be lumber for walking over the construction
There was recently a man walking around wearing boots
There is an open field or cleared area – like there was remolding going on
She is lost
She has not heard your voice
And she is in a clump of bushes with little birds above, she is mesmerized by the birds like she is on a grand safari.
We talked a little bit – I asked her what she is eating and she said
She is eating birds and mice and they can go for about 2 weeks before there is liver damage. Hilary also said that when looking for her – they can easily be spooked – so use body language that is friendly to a cat – sit down – read a book - be relaxed and they will come out of hiding.
I was in Maryland when I got the reading, so I couldn’t go out right then, and it was raining in PA. But, the first thing that came to mind was the neighbors down the street. I recalled that there had been some digging in front of their house and they had a footbridge and they had just cleared the area for a pole building behind the house – this was pretty similar to what she had said but wasn’t that far away.
The next morning (Saturday – June 30th) when I got home, I drove around the neighborhood to see where 1 ¼ mile radius would be and whether there was any where else that might fit that description. I couldn’t find any place that did. I drove the big circle around Virginville Road and back to the cave, a mile and a quarter would be down to the horse farm (Dreiblebis’s) and back to the cave. I came home and thought – she had to be at the neighbors – it closely fit the description, especially the foot bridge.
So I walked back and forth in front of their house and it didn’t look like anyone was home. Finally, I saw their father-in-law (Frank) who lives nearby and drove up to talk to him. I explained that I was the one who had lost my cat (from the flyers) – and we talked about a lot of other things – and I was wondering if I could look through the bushes in front of the house for her. By the time we were done talking Monica (owner of the house) came home and I told her the story – I got permission and went looking in front of the house. And there – there was a rusty pipe, the footbridge, dirty lumber, and lots of bushes with birdies. I called for Daisy and kept looking under the bushes – I expected to see a curled up Daisy, but there was no white kitty. I had to go run my errands before everything closed – so I did. I was disappointed, but yet hopeful that she was there. I’ll try again later.
The photos below will illustrate where I saw the lumber, the bushes, the rusty pipe, where the trench had been dug, the footbridge, and the clearing was. I walked around the yard, looking in the bushes along the front of the house, and under the evergreens along side of the house.
Bushes with birds
Clearing for pole building (remodeling)
Footbridge – brown and with dead grass on it
This was a man made ditch for pipes (now grown over with grass but was dirt that day)
Daisy comes home!
The day was really busy, and we ended up going for groceries at 10 pm and made it back home by midnight. I carried some bags in and fed the cats on the back porch because they hadn’t eaten. I walked out to the car to get the groceries, and there was a white cat under the Dodge panel truck. I know the other white ones are on the porch eating…I started to get excited – “Daisy?”, I called, and “Meow” was the response, I called her again and she meowed back…I knew it was her. My heart started pounding, and I wanted to run down to her and scoop her up, but I recalled what Hilary told me…stay calm and use inviting body language. I quickly sat down and tried to keep really calm as Hillary had suggested, and kept calling her and didn’t take my eyes off of her. I knew Michael was in the house on the phone – so I called him to help. He saw me sitting on the ground and thought something had happened. I motioned and told him that Daisy was here. I kept trying to encourage her to come on her own and after a little while, I thought she was coming – she started to walk towards me, but she made a wide berth around me – and back to the car where she left. (Someone once told me that they return to the place where they left.) She walked under the cars, sniffed a little – and ran back to the Dodge. The first thing I saw was that she had lost a lot of weight. But when she walked, I knew it was her, she walked just like she had since she was declawed. So, now all I had to do was catch her, but I knew this might take some time but I was determined.
Michael went in and brought out a flashlight and cat food. He was trying to get her to come by rattling the cat food can and lid – but it was starting to attract the rest of the outside kitties and we were worried that would scare her off. She also went back under the car and we couldn’t see her anymore. He said that I should go down to the gas station and sit on the porch with the food, and turn on the lights down there. I took the key, went down to the gas station, turned on the lights, and by the time I turned around, there was Daisy coming for the food. I had it sitting on the porch. I sat down, and she came up and licked a little of it – but then took off again before I could catch her. She was still a little timid. I moved the can back a little further on the porch so she would have to come between me and some other things to get to it. She came back again and this time, I let her lick it a little longer, I reached for her, started to pet her, and just picked her up, ever so gently and held her to me. I had my Daisy back. She was really, really hungry and at this point just wanted to eat. I took her in the house to show Mike. He said he was surprised how quickly I was able to catch her. I was SO HAPPY!
So at this point you have to ask – was that a coincident? - or did the psychic point me in the right direction so that she would find my scent and come home. We were still a little skeptical, and we also checked out Google Earth to see if the house and the images were there. I found that the images are too old to have seen those things with a computer. It is hard to comprehend, but we are both believers that there is something to this animal communication. Less than 12 hours – she was back home after being gone for 4 weeks and 1 day. Daisy is home and has no desires to go anywhere…and I’m not sure who was happier for her to be back home….her or me! She was purring and kneading like I never saw her do before!
We put her in the bathroom so we could look at her. She was dirty, her nose was scratched, and she had ticks and fleas and was very, very thin. I gave her some food and water, and then started to clean her up. She was very calm; she knew she was home too. We picked the ticks off her. We combed the fleas out and the rest of the dirt. We put her in a kennel because she did escape from the bathroom once and was acting very scared, but we were able to catch her again…this time she was in the house! I set up the dog crate to keep her contained overnight so I could see how she was doing. I knew that I should only give her small amounts of food. She was eating and drinking, but I didn’t see her use the litter box, but then again, I didn’t believe she had much of anything in her system.
First night back - Significant Weight Loss
But it’s not over yet!
Sunday morning – she was still very hungry, but she seemed ok. I was feeding her small quantities, but frequently. I had planned to take her to the vet first thing Monday morning. We loaded her in the car to take her to Maryland. In the first hour of the trip, (by the time we got to the Maryland line) she threw up 6 times, each time we had to stop and clean it up. This is not good. She wanted to be held, so I was holding her and her eyes were glassy, and she was extremely weak. She laid her head on my arm and it was like a dead weight. Michael said, “Do you want to go back to the emergency vet in Allentown?”, and I said, YES. We turned around as soon as we could to head back North. I was really worried about her at this point. I thought she was going to die, right there in my arms, after all she went through to come back home. I wasn’t about to let that happen. I pulled out my phone and looked for a place in York, and there was an emergency vet at the Queen St. exit, about a mile off of Rt. 83. I called them, got directions and told them we were coming. I carried her in, she was wrapped in my sweater and towel. We went there and they admitted her. She was extremely dehydrated. She was going to stay overnight and they were going to run a full battery of blood tests and xrays and they would have the results in about a half an hour. We headed back home. They said that the blood work, and x-rays were looking pretty good – there was nothing that was out of the ordinary – everything was consistent with the shape she was in. I emptied some of the car, and called at 6 am the next morning. The doctor said that she was perking up with the fluids and starting to even look better –not so drawn, but I should call them back after shift change at 8 am and talk to Dr. Miller. I talked to her and she said that it would be worth keeping her a little longer. So we agreed on picking her up at 6 pm that night. I couldn’t wait to get her back!
So, $1051 later, we picked her up and she was a brand new kitty. She looked better, she was happy and playful. They told me there was a kitty in the kennel next to hers that had been missing for only 3 days and she looked so much better than he did! We took her down to Maryland and I put her in her room. She was rolling around, purring, kneading, so happy, even looking for mice under the dresser! She is on the road to recovery.
She is getting a dewormer and Metronitazole (broad spectrum antibiotic and parasite killer). She was 5 lbs 10 oz. when she was admitted. I’m not exactly sure how much she weighed before she left home, but I suspect she lost about 4 to 5 pounds in the month she was gone. (I called later and found out that she was 9 lbs, 9.5 oz in January). By Wednesday, she developed an upper respiratory infection (probably from the stress)…but she seems to be on the mend (after she was sleeping a lot for a couple of days – I think she was fighting the infection, and just really tired!). In 3 days, she gained between a half and three quarters of a pound, she is now 6 pounds 5 ounces. She hates the medicine, but she is washing, and cleaning herself up.
By the following week she is up to 7 pounds, eating well, clean and soft and back to her normal routine. I am feeding her extra to get her to pack on some pounds; she just needs to get over the upper respiratory infection. With the weight gain, when you pet her, you no longer feel every bone on her back as you did when she first came back.
17 June 2012 – I messed up and changed her food, hoping that she would eat more, and now she is throwing up and has the runs. She does seem to have an appetite. By Monday, she was hungry again and back to normal. By the end of the week she is up another ½ pound to 7.5 pounds. I am starting to worry, almost every Sunday there is something!
24 June – she still seems to have the upper respiratory infection. I’m going to take her to the vet to get her checked again. Dr. O’Connor is on vacation so she will have to see another doctor.
27 June 2012 - I took Daisy to the vet (Dr. Mattison) for her upper respiratory infection. The doctor checked her and said she should take an antibiotic. The doctor gave her Doxycyclene for it. She weighed 7 pounds, 10 oz at the visit. I also called the vet where she had her front declaw surgery in January to find out what she weighed then. She was 9 pounds 9.5 ozs. So, she still has about 2 pounds to gain to get back to where she was.Still skinny and getting over the Upper Respiratory Infection
9 July 2012 – She seems to be over her upper respiratory infection. She weighed about 7 ¾ pounds. Even her nose cleared up. It was black. She looks sleek rather than skinny. She really looks like her old self again. Everything is going to be OK!
Back To Normal!!!
I hope this is the happily ever after ending to the story. It has been a long two months, but she seems to be doing really well. She is herself and I am happy again too! We will continue to get her weight up a little. She is back to sleeping in beds, playing with fake mice and other cat toys, eating when she wants, (and she does seem to let us know when she is hungry!) and quite content with her life.
To be continued….