Lost Cat Found in Internet Search Gives Pet Owners Hope

A few years ago, my cat disappeared. I drove around calling her name, I posted flyers, I visited the Humane Society daily, I posted an ad on Craigslist. Days and weeks and months went by, and nothing. No cat. We never did find out what happened to her.

It was a sad time, and the lack of closure made things even worse. Eventually, I just ... gave up, I suppose, because I didn't know what else I could do.

The same thing happened to a Brooklyn woman named Karen Hansen, but even though her pet disappeared in October of 2010, she never stopped believing that her cat Sammie was still alive. Thanks to the magic of the Internet, she was reunited with her pet last week—exactly one year after she lost him.


Hansen's cat Sammie escaped out her front door on October 9, 2010, and Hansen immediately put up flyers and posted notices in the New York Daily News. She didn't stop there, though: there is at least one Facebook page dedicated to finding Sammie, and Sammie's picture was also posted to several missing pets websites.

One year after Sammie's disappearance, a nearby Brooklyn neighbor who was regularly feeding a pack of stray cats spotted a photo of Sammie online. She said,

I started looking and I said, "Gee, I think I feed this cat." I had a feeling it might be him when I read that the cat in the picture was blind in one eye.

The neighbor contacted Hansen, and now the 3-year-old cat is back home with his rightful owner—probably happy as hell to have a warm bed to sleep in again.

There's something that's just so uplifting about this whole story. I mean, obviously the part where the lady got her cat back is lovely, but I'm also moved by the fact that her neighbor was not only taking care of lost cats, she was actively scouring the web trying to figure out who their owners were.

It's a pleasant change to hear about the Internet being used for something that's so basically good, don't you think? After a year of Hansen making sure her cat's information was available online, the fact that her tireless efforts finally proved successful is just a joy to read.

I know one thing's for certain: if I ever lose a pet again (godforbid), I will definitely turn to the web as an additional resource. It would never have occurred to me to create a Facebook page for a missing pet, but obviously in Hansen's case, it was a smart idea. In addition to publishing photos and info on lost and found pet websites (like Petfinder.com), experts now suggest posting messages about your pet to local message boards, community sites (Patch.com is a good one), and using social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to the get the word out. We may be living in an age of information overload, but it's nice to know there are so many options when you need to ask for help.

Have you ever used the web to help locate a missing pet?

Image via Flickr/Stewart Black

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