Anyone who has had a family pet go missing knows how terrifying that feeling is. Whether the cat wandered out in the neighborhood or the dog went to the house up the street, pet owners are relieved if their four-legged friend returns home or is found and they’re notified of the animal’s whereabouts. When a Canadian cat named Baloo was nowhere to be found, however, his owner, Jackie Lake, never could have imagined that he’d be found 750 miles from home.
How did Baloo get so far from home?
It seems it’s all because of a slight error that Jackie made when mailing a package at the holidays because she didn’t know that the cat had climbed into the box! Baloo was accidentally mailed to Montreal inside of the package.
It seems Baloo snuck into the box before Jackie sealed it up and sent it on its way — and then she noticed, strangely enough, that the cat was missing. Jackie explained to CTV Atlantic, “It was a horrible feeling.”
The family searched the neighborhood for the cat and feared the worst… until they got a call from a shipping company employee in Montreal who found Baloo. Jackie recalled the conversation, noting: “She paused and said, ‘So, you didn’t ship a cat?’” after Baloo was discovered by a truck driver in the back of his vehicle.
Baloo had escaped from the box he had been shipped in. Jackie explained, “My first question was, ‘Is he alive? Like, did I kill my cat?’”
Baloo was luckily alive and well. The shipping company in Montreal contacted a local animal shelter and they came to get the cat, who was returned to his family a few days later. After the cat’s return from his incredible journey, Jackie told Global News: “There’s been lots of treats and lots of belly rubs.”
He was gone 10 days total. Jackie noted that she was thankful for the coordinated efforts to get Baloo back home, which included the Montreal SPCA and a volunteer group called Freedom Drivers, who transport shelter animals. She explained: “I can’t stop thanking these people for helping me. They took really good care of him. I’m just eternally grateful.”
After he made the trip back, Jackie explained, “He was a little freaked out when he first got home, he’s had quite the ordeal. I just kept picking him up and saying ‘I’m sorry.'”
He quickly acclimated, however, as she noted: “But by the end of the night he was back to his old mischievous self. He ripped a whole bag of cat litter in the bathroom so he and his brother could play in it while I was sleeping.”
Jackie joked that her family isn’t allowing her near boxes anymore since the incident, noting, “I’m never going to live it down.”
SPCA spokesperson Anita Kapuscinska noted: “We were all extremely relieved that Balloo made it OK to Montreal, that he survived the trip.”
Among the many comments left on social media about the cat’s travels were many pet owners who had similar experiences.
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