A lost cat


On Tuesday evening, International Cat of Mystery Clive Bond walked out of the house, and he didn’t come back.

We are bereft. Such a huge part of our family, that small creature; and if mediaeval drawing conventions were still in place he would be the same size as the rest of us.

We scan the forest from the windows for a small black returning form, and leave fresh chicken out in his bowl. We open the front door and wait for him to join us as he usually does, without fail. We take the dog for long searches and shake the cat food box and call his name, again and again.

We listen to comforting tales from friends about cats returning after mammoth wanders, but the time lengthens and our master spy does not return.

We are heart-heavy.

As, I expect, are you. I waited for days in case we could write a cheery return-of-the-Clive post but there comes a moment when everyone needs to know, and this is it.

I know this is a cat, not a human.

But loss is fathomless, isn’t it?


92 thoughts on “A lost cat

  1. Oh Kate I am so sorry.He has had huge impact for all ofhis brief time with you. Hugs from me and my furry ones to all of you.
    The rainbow bridge is a sweet concept, across it wait all our departed pets and other animal friends. They wait for us to die so we can be happy together again.

    1. I’ve rescued many cats over the years. Even if something takes one away from the family, I am glad to offer a home to another deserving stray for a happier life than scrounging for food and shelter. There’ll never be a ‘No more cats’ for me, however sad it is to lose one.

      1. They wander into your life and make themselves comfortable, without a hint of dependence, don’t they, Mairs? Thank you so much for your words today.

  2. So sad to hear that. We lost our 1 year old black cat Max a few months ago, so know how you are feeling. Fingers crossed that Clive comes back.

  3. a cat may not be ‘human’ in the human form but as part of your family he is the biggest human in the household.
    I am like the majority and I think that he will return…mine disapeared for three weeks and came back with a detached leg…he was that determined to come home.

    Have you spoken to God about this ..He knows where your cat is….If you are not a believer you may think I am around the twist but believe me it works 100%

    1. My heart aches for your entire family, Kate. Loss, in any form, is such a difficult thing to handle. I am, however, firmly in misswhiplash’s camp; prayer works, although I think the prayer has to be more along the lines of requesting an answer that is solely in Clive’s best interest. Hugs.

      1. Karen, wise words indeed. The outcome should be that this quicksilver little spirit gets to enjoy life for as long as possible, with whomever, and wherever, that may be. Thank you.

  4. That’s really sad 😦
    As others have said, our black cat went out one night and came back pleased as punch a few days later
    We are almost used to it now
    Hope he comes back home soon

  5. Oh, Kate.
    I do hope he’s off saving the world and doing spy things.
    The Brother’s long haired cat went away for weeks and only returned after her new family had subjected her to the indignity of a grooming.
    Loss is, indeed, fathomless

  6. There is no “it’s just a cat…” Those words twirl around brains fitfully and once they reach the heart, they disintegrate. This is too sad, Kate, and I would love to see a story about how the great black puss suddenly shows up looking smug and secretive. So sorry – for all of you. These little fur-balls are heart bombs whether we like it or not!

  7. Just read this heartrending story and sitting here in wintery Australia, with tears trickling down my face. That cat was/is a character that we’ve all grown to love. Just hoping for good news and if not at least to know what may have befallen him.

    1. Mairs, thank you. He is quite a character. Such a joy, and the dog is missing him. I will of course keep everyone posted. But thank you for taking the time to talk with us today.

  8. Oh Oh I just hear you (and Maddie and Phil) trying to comfort/explain to Felix and Macauley. He came, he shifted planet Shrewsday, and then… not knowing is not good I am thinking of you all today.

  9. Oh no, Kate – that’s terrible news – I can imagine all too well the black hole in the middle of the Shrewsday household. It happened to me once (with a happy outcome in the end), but since Tuesday? You’re right, that seems too long for him to have become sidetracked while undertaking a little sleuthing in the forest. Lets hope he’s been captured by the baddies and is trying to rescue the world before he escapes. Fingers crossed, dear …

  10. One of my cats wandered off and didn’t return for three weeks. She was out adventuring, perhaps, and was none worse for the wear.

  11. Oh no, Kate… I hope he returns home soon. My brother’s cat took herself on holiday a few years ago and jumped out on him (literally into his arms!)after a few days (7) away. You notice them when they’re there, and you notice them even more when they’re not.

    1. It’s a real limbo, Heather; because when do you decide you have waited long enough? We will be scanning the woods for longer than weeks, without a shadow of a doubt, unless he comes home mean time.

      1. I can completely see that. Routine dictates that some things carry on as “normal”, yet things aren’t normal. I know you’ve heard it all before, but there are often stories of cats making their way back home after an extended wander. I sincerely hope that Clive will soon be the protaganist is one such story.

  12. Oh, no. He’s such a wee lad to be on his own in such a big world. I do hope he’s just out being a Summer Wayfarer and will return after he’s wandered a few paths.

  13. Kate, I know exactly how you feel, I’ve been there. I can only say that a reassuring
    thought can be to trust your cat’s survival instincts and hopefully he’ll either come back home in a while or someone will help him get there. I also get the need to have stop the heartbreaking but do trust his strength and brains, wherever he is. Fluffy thoughts for you and your family.

    1. What great thoughts, Rocio, thank you so much. You’re right: Clive is not daft and can look after himself. If he has chosen a different hotel, well, then, he’s still comfortable and happy, and that’s what matters.

  14. Oh, Kate! It’s devastating. I can only send you the very deepest, heartfelt wishes for Clive Bond’s safe return. 😦

  15. Oh No! I do hope he is just locked in a shed or garage somewhere – don’t think of the rainbow just yet ….. hard not to though as time goes by. 😦 lighting a candle to guide him home. My black cat, Billy, disappears for days and then just turns up as though nothing has happened. Sam the other black cat, rarely goes out of the garden! They are all so different! Hugs and kisses to you all at this worrying time x x x

  16. I am so sorry that you and your family are going thru this and hope that Bond returns home soon. Years ago, one of our cats, Tumbleweed, went missing for about 2 days. When we found her, she was in the bushes across the street. At first, she would not even come out when we called. We did get her and bring her home where we had many more happy years together. I don’t know what it was she got in to, but it didn’t happen again.

    You all are in our hearts and prayers.

  17. He may well come back, Kate. Cats are funny creatures that way, as you know. Keeping my fingers crossed and sending vibes to Clive Bond to find his way back.

  18. Someone has posted on a local FB group about a black cat hanging around her friend’s house for the last few days – other side of your town, but you never know – have texted you

  19. Being bereft is awful, whatever the loss, there’s an emotional hole in one’s heart that impossible to plug voluntarily: it has to heal itself. Not knowing what has happened to a loved one, human or otherwise, means the grieving can’t properly start as there’s always a chance they will re-appear out of the blue. Just as hard, though in a different way, is watching one slip away, whether it’s a close relative or a terminally ill cat that has to be put to sleep. At least one has a chance to grieve.

  20. Since Tuesday? has he had the snip, or could his hormones have led him astray? I am not sure if i lived by woodland that MasterB would be easy to get home at night. He may be hunting and eating well, From what you have written before, he sounds very attached to his home, so I shall keep my fingers crossed that this is an adventure, and that he will turn up, weary and victorious like a teenager after their first time at Glastonbury.
    Have you called round the local vets? If someone has taken him in at some point they will probably take him to see the vet and his microchip will lead to you being reunited.

  21. I’m sorry for this separation – Cats are fickle friends, they move on to other sources of companionship and food without having the means to tell us why. I’m sure Clive has found a friend somewhere out there. Equally, don’t be surprised if he suddenly returns while you’re sitting in the garden to wrap his tail round your leg πŸ™‚ Positive thinking, I’m sure he’s fine – though that is little comfort to you.

  22. There’s little I can add to the outpouring of grief, concern and hope from fellow commenters, but I do wish that Clive returns home soon, too. If he does, I look forward to reading that post. He has such a cush life as The Shrewsday Cat. I wish I could trade places with him.

  23. Oh, Kate! I join the numbers who hope for Clive’s return, and my heart is heavy indeed. Poor Mac, too, to have found a bloke to pal around with and have him vanish. Love to you all.

  24. Oh no! I hope he returns safe to his family, Kate. As a cat owner of many years myself, I know how you are feeling. Much hope and prayers for you and Clive Bond!

  25. Clive Bond, as you have relayed to us, is a great adventurer and super-spy. Keep hope that he is simply on an undercover mission and will return to you safely very soon.

  26. Devastating.
    The worst part is not knowing.
    One keeps hoping for one of the many stories of miraculous homecomings after all hope has been given up, but they don’t always happen. I still have an ache in my heart for a little grey Burmese who just vanished one day when still a ‘teenager’. Thomas would chase and return his favourite soft toy, ‘Bunratty’, like a sheepdog with a ball no matter how many times one cared to throw it. Drop it in front of one, and poise himself for the next chase. It wasn’t just that, though …

  27. I saw the title and yet still expected a happy ending. I’m so sorry. I know it’s a long shot, but I’ve had a cat return after missing for quite some time. I do understand the word bereft. Yes, a cat, but not “just a” cat. Clive! Hugs to all…

  28. Sorry to hear this. Pets are much more than just ‘animals’ they are family members and loved ones. Really hope he comes home soon safe and sound

  29. I scrolled down to the end of the comments hoping with all my heart for good news. I would be devastated if any of my cats went astray. I’ve cried like a baby for the ones we had to put down. Cats, dogs, parrots, ferrets, any little beast we give our heart to becomes a member of our family and we care for them as deeply. I know of many cats who have come home after a long adventure. When I was a girl living in the country, I had a cat who would disappear for days at a time. It was always so unnerving. There’s still hope he will come back, a little worse for wear, no doubt. I’ll keep hoping for his return.

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