The tiger tabby screamed for help. She was lost, scared, and desperate.
Snow had fallen the day before, and today gray clouds again hung heavy in the air. The cat drooled as she huddled in pain.
“Harley was so happy when I put her in my car out of the cold,” Nicole said, “that she cuddled with me the whole ride home.”
Despite it being almost Christmas, Nicole began a search for Harley’s owner. Nicole asked around the neighborhood where she’d found Harley, but no one knew anything about the beautiful cat with white back paws.
Nicole didn’t give up. After the festivities of Christmas had ended, she called the Capital Humane Society. Through a microchip check, Nicole found out Harley had an owner. She called the number only to discover that no one there had a cat.
Still determined to reunite Harley with her owner, Nicole turned to social media. On the Facebook page for Lincoln Pet Exchange, she wrote, “I found this baby…. Cat is about four years old. I really want to get her back home. If anyone knows anything let me know!”
In the meantime, Harley continued to stay with Nicole and her family. Harley tended to hide under beds or in closets, but she also welcomed cuddles. “She was so very easy to care for and love,” Nicole said.
Then the unimaginable happened. By doing a reverse phone number search, Nicole found Harley’s owner. But Nicole was devastated when the person said they didn’t want Harley back
This left Nicole in a quandary. She considered keeping Harley, but the family already had a cat. Lilac is very possessive, according to Nicole, and doesn’t share well.
The family kept the two cats apart as much as possible. Harley didn’t need any further stress, Nicole said.
Ultimately, it didn’t seem in the best interest of either cat to keep Harley. “We were so busy we just didn’t have the time to put in to working with them both,” Nicole said, “and never having pets before we didn’t know how.”
The microchip company told Nicole that she had to allow two weeks before she could rehome Harley. Nicole said, “I posted on Facebook and interviewed many people I was determined to find her a good home!”
One person expressed interest, but it didn’t work out. Nicole then conducted a second search, which was more successful. “I found Harley a home with a loving family who couldn’t afford a service pet for their daughter with severe depression,” said Nicole. “Harley is so loving and calm and just wants to be loved. It was a great fit!”
On the Lincoln Pet Exchange, Nicole wrote, “My heart is so sad that someone would abandon this wonderful kitty, but I am so happy I found her, and have learned there are so many amazing people willing to try to find her home! Thanks to everyone!”
She had this advice for pet owners: Chip your animals and care for them. If you don’t want them, surrender them; Don’t abandon them!”
Nicole found Harley in December 2017. As of last month, Nicole reports, “Harley is doing wonderful and is very loved! She has fit in great with the family!”
Nicole says that Harley was her Christmas miracle, and she’d do it again in a minute. If needed, she’d take Harley back, without thinking about it. “Hearing Harley’s cries in that parking lot will live with me forever. She melted my heart.”
There are about 70 million homeless cats. Of those, about 3.4 million enter shelters each year, of which about 1.4 million are euthanized. Please consider giving a cat like Harley a miracle this year by opening up your home.