One family cat, who was missing for 14 months, reunited with his family after he was found living in a nearby pet food factory. Clive, a Norwegian Forest cat, disappeared from his home in December 2014 and left his owners Tanya and Jonathan Irons devastated. The couple launched an appeal on Facebook and put up posters around their neighborhood in search of the missing cat but unfortunately, to no avail. Tanya later said: “He used to be very naughty and liked to go outside a lot. We thought somebody must have taken him in as he’s such a cute cat.”
Meet Clive – the little rascal who has been living and feasting in a pet food factory for 14 months
As it turned out, nobody took Clive in – he was actually having the time of his life. The ever-hungry cat was found after the staff of one pet food factory noticed that the cat food had been going missing and decided to trap the burglar. They left a trail of cat treats which lead to a basket suspended over a pressure pad, which would cause it to drop leaving the suspect inside. One morning, after the staff came in, they saw that the trap worked. Workers took the funny cat to a vet who scanned his microchip, revealing that he was registered to the Irons family, who were living just two miles away from the pet food factory.
This is Clive (right) together with his brother, right before he went missing
Production supervisor at Kennelgate Pet Superstore Diane Gaskill later told: “I’ve been trying to catch him for weeks when I found out we had such a big cat living in the warehouse. I saw him run past me a couple of times and we found droppings. I set a cat trap one weeknight, and I found him in the morning. He was hissing and spitting, but he knew the game was up. We took him to the vets, and we were able to get the mobile number of his owner. I rang her straight away – she couldn’t believe it.”
Retail director of the company, Colin Lewis, added: “It’s amazing. The warehouse is 20 thousand square foot of pet food. I think there have been a few holes in some of the boxes. It was a team effort to get the fat cat; I think everyone had a go over the week before Diane found him. We kept finding cat poop and a few people said they saw him, but it took a while to get him. We got the trap from a cat rescue center. It’s a cage – you put some food in it, then when the cat goes in, there’s a pressure pad that shuts the door behind it. Clive only ate cat food in the factory; I think he thought he was living in a penthouse.”
Finally, the family has reunited with the gluttonous Clive – only to realize that their beloved cat ballooned to almost twice his original size. Tanya, Clive’s owner, said: “Clive was nine months old when we lost him – and he was a lot smaller then. When we got him back, we were shocked to see how big and fluffy he was. He’s been living the life of Riley in that pet food factory. We heard Clive was a bit smelly when they caught him, but he seems fine now. He recognizes us; he’s just fatter now.”
“I think he’s been enjoying himself feasting for the past year. He’s wasn’t a big eater before, but he always had to eat very quickly before his brothers stole it. He was probably glad he didn’t have to compete with them to eat for once. He has a huge appetite now though. I’ve had to leave him with a big bucket of food; he just won’t stop eating. We’re not going to put him on a diet though, he’s just a bit rounder, but he’s a perfect cat picture.”