I almost named this post Stealing Thunder, but I figured Missing Thunder was more appropriate.
I mentioned the other day that there was news about Thunder, our kitty. Sad news. Thunder is missing. He has been missing today for 2 weeks. I am constantly looking, wondering where is he? What happened to him? Calling out to him, thinking about him. Is he hurt somewhere? or worse? (most likely). Did someone hit him? (no body found) Did someone steal him? (not likely as he ran from people other than Asher and I). Did a coyote get him? (searched and no fur and don’t recall hearing coyotes in our area for months) Could it have been a Great Horned Owl? I’ve heard they can take off with pray larger than themselves. I’ve also heard we have a bobcat in the area.
But Thunder was one tough cat, and big. He was a lean 16 pounds of all muscle. My husband called him No Neck because he was so muscular. He would hunt and bring large dead animals to the door all the time. Once, a Mallard Duck. A freaking Mallard Duck! Also a weasel! I have seen him hunt together with Zoey. Together they took turns digging and then catching a mole. He was always right there ready to attack when I would find snakes. But if it were an owl or other large bird, like hawks, he might not even see it coming.
Being gone for more than a day was not like him. He always wanted to be around us, followed us around out in the yard, came in the rooms we were in. You know, just a cat that actually wanted and liked attention. He would cry in the house when we left a room and then wander around like he couldn’t find us. It was a running joke. I always teased and called him Cry Baby, that always made Asher mad. Thunder was mainly Asher’s cat, at least Asher thought so. I loved him too, and I really really miss him.
This is not the first time this has happened. Or the second. Not even the third. It’s like I live in a Bermuda Triangle for animals. I have had 4 of my animals just disappear without a trace. The first two were likely to have run off to die alone as animals sometimes do. They were pretty old for dogs. The third was Lightning, Thunder’s twin kitty brother. We figured the coyotes got him as he liked to roam around a little more than Thunder did. Both cats were males and both were fixed, so I’ve read that they really don’t go out on the prowl like an intact male would.
The first night he was missing, a Wednesday night, I woke up at 2:30 and started to think about him. At this point we didn’t know that he was really missing, as I had seen him that morning. I couldn’t stop thinking about him. I went over everything that happened that day and finally got up out of bed and put on some shoes and went out with a flashlight and walked down our road calling for him for an hour before going back to bed.
And it’s not like I haven’t looked since then. Oh my God have I looked. We have 10 acres of woods, lake and some yard. I have hiked practically every inch of our woods with Zoey, and the neighboring woods and fields, hoping she would lead me to him or what was left. I’ve got the poison ivy to prove it. I have looked and called and prayed to God – I’ve even asked my helpers and spirit guide for help. Asked spirits of the forest as I hiked, asked my guardian angel. Hey, don’t judge! I’m not cuckoo -I’m just trying anything and everything in my power!
I’ve drove around and yelled for him. People probably thought I’ve lost my mind, driving real slow with my head hanging out the window making smooching sounds and calling out “Thunnnnnnnnderrrrrrrr…. here kitty, kitty, kitty, kitty!” Asher looking out the other side and trying to yell for him too, in-between sobs. Of course if they heard me talking to the forest spirits they probably would think I’m nuts. You’ve heard of those, right? I think some call them Elementals.
It just sucks not knowing. I feel it is worse to not know one way or the other. By now, I’m fairly sure he won’t be returning and most likely he has crossed that rainbow bridge. I just hope it wasn’t painful or slow. Why do they run off like that? I’ve made up missing signs and posted them around the area, called the vet, posted it on social media. I’ve read websites that offer advice on what to do for missing cats and learned that they are usually only within 5 house radius but that is in a town setting. What about the country? Could be miles for an outdoor access cat, one said. I’ve contacted my mail carrier and she’s on lookout and nearby neighbors. I’ve even talked to a utilities worker that is doing work in the area. Nothing so far.
The only thing that makes sense is something I read on one of the finding a missing cat sites. It mentioned cats will hide (usually close by) if they are sick or hurt or even have a urinary tract infection. The day Thunder went missing, I caught him peeing on the floor. I knew he had been doing it but was having a hard time catching him to make sure which cat it was, Thunder or Mocee. This was not something normal for him. He usually used the liter box or went outside. So, in retrospect I wonder if he did have an UTI and hid because of that. But the thing that doesn’t make me 100% sure is he acted fine, not ill or hurting. He played and wrestled with the dog. He gobbled up treats like there was no tomorrow (no pun intended) and ran through the house like a hurricane. I never heard him cry out in pain when I saw him urinate. That last time when I actually did see him do it, I was changing the cat litter out and he did it. I was just about to take him to the vet for his yearly shots and ask the vet about him peeing in bags and newspapers when he went missing. Talk about feeling guilt. If only I had done it and hadn’t put it off. I was going to go the week before but just didn’t go in. I procrastinate for the worst things.
One thing most every lost cat site does say though, is do not stop looking. If he is in hiding, one said it’s typical for 10 days to go by before the cat will even leave their hiding spot if they were chased or spooked. One said if they climbed up too high in a tree, they probably can’t get back down. I haven’t shared this with anyone yet, but I have seriously thought about asking a psychic about Thunder. I know one, but we aren’t on speaking terms anymore. I have thought of asking her anyway and even thought about what I would say to her, but then changed my mind. Figuring it would be best to not go there, with her. So, if any of you out there have the gift… I’d love to have your thoughts!
I’ve had a few dreams about Thunder. The first was him lying down with his little pink tongue hanging out in the woods, and he weakly looked over at me then I woke up. Another one, I saw him in our yard from afar and said is that you? He came up and I was trying to decide if it really was him and I remember feeling like I just couldn’t wait to tell Asher but I didn’t seem to know where he was. Then, the last one Thunder was just appeared back home and it was after school was back in (just 2 weeks away) and I wanted to go and get him out of school to surprise him. I am holding out for that one. Asher talks about Thunder mostly like he will be back. “When Thunder comes home…” this and that. Daryl and I just look at each other. No sense in crushing his hopes. Besides, it’s not impossible.
I wanted to share some of my favorite photos of Thunder.