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Friday
Nov092012

In West Philadelphia, Born and Raised

Meet the new addition to the OAR family - this gal has quite a story to tell!

In October, OAR's Executive Director got a call from Philadelphia Animal Care and Control (PACC) - yes, you heard us right, PHILADELPHIA Animal Care and Control. A cat had just come into their shelter with a microchip that was registered to OAR (microchips save lives, folks!). OAR microchips all of the cats that are adopted from our shelter, but the chip number that PACC provided was not in the records of our adopted cats. We finally found the microchip number in our spay/neuter clinic database - it was a microchip purchased by a client who had her cat fixed at OAR. The client had not yet registered the microchip in her own name, so the chip was still registered to OAR.

Of course, we immediately called the client, to give her the joyous news that her cat was found - in, uh, Philadelphia. Puzzled, the client responded "well yes, I did have my cat fixed and microchipped at OAR. But that cat isn't missing - she's right here!"

Somewhere along the way, a mistake had been made, by OAR, by PACC, or by the microchip company. But we knew that this baby girl was at a high-intake municipal shelter, and the future of cats in city municipal shelters is typically a bleak one. We worried about the likelihood of her being put down while we investigated the mystery. So rather than focus on the issue of the microchip, we mobilized to figure out how to get her from Philadelphia to Cincinnati.

Working with Philadelphia cat rescue group Kitty Cottage (and thank you to them, for their patience and kindness!), OAR was able to find out a bit more information about this little cat. She had been relinquished by her owners to the shelter, due to financial difficulties. She also had a tail injury that would require surgery. But, once the mandatory hold period was up, and the surgery was done, OAR could pick the cat up.

We had lots of plans in place - old college roommates were called in for favors ("even though you're in the middle of selling your house, could you please foster a cat for the week?"), sisters were called ("how comfortable are you taking a cat on the plane with you?"). We mulled over whether to fly or drive. We had multiple people ready to mobilize to pick up this little gal, who we now call Philly. Little Philly was supposed to join an OAR volunteer's sister on her flight from Philadelphia to Cincinnati. But Philly had other plans - busting out of her carrier before they could get on the plane - and both cat and sister missed their flight. After being fostered by a very compassionate neighbor, eventually Philly made her way to OAR by car, thanks to two of our wonderful OAR volunteers and their tremendously good-natured sister.

Philly is now safely at OAR, and is up for adoption, after a whirlwind month. She's a wonderfully curious kitty, who loves to talk, and is very appreciative of having her back scratched. Oh, and that microchip? Turns out, PACC had misread the number - the chip actually ended in a B, not an 8, and it was registered to the family that had surrendered her. No matter to us - a life saved is a life saved. And a lucky cat lived to tell her tale.

 

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