The Cat That Refused To Leave Crawlspace When Owners Moved Causes Feud; Finally Back Home

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Two families outside of Portland, Oregon found themselves in a battle over a cat that they never imagined would escalated as it has.

Violet, a shy but stubborn 9-year old Tuxie, was at the center of the issue.

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Retreating to her favorite hiding spot when the movers arrived 2 weeks ago, Lisa and Emily Szefel believed she had possibly gotten out and was lost. Heartbroken, they were unable to locate her and had to leave the property.

When the new homeowners found cat pee in the house the following week, they knew Violet was still there somewhere and contacted the Szefel’s to inform them.

Violet was located in her favorite hiding spot, the crawlspace. They could not coax the stubborn tuxie out and were unable to reach her to grab her. They say she’s never gone that deep into her safe spot, refusing to come out.

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Unfortunately, the new owners of the home could only allow the Szefels to return during their limited availability. Attempts to catch the cat in the afternoons was unsuccessful day after day. Not the most active time for cats since they are crepuscular, primarily active at dawn and dusk, this made it harder on both families to retrieve the feline.

Tensions mounted and after a week of trying daily to catch her, both families had become frustrated at the odd situation. The new owners stated that Violet had the food, water and a litter box Lisa had left near her and was using it when no one was around. Lisa and Emily were upset they weren’t given access at more cat-friendly times to have the best chance of catching her.

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Still trying to settle into their new home, the new owners were upset and irritated that a huge chunk of their lives was being taken up by the invasive issue. They’d even cut a hole in the wall to try to reach the sneaky girl! They eventually hired a local cat rescuer to help the catch the cat. Although this may stress Violet out with exposure to an unknown party, nothing else had worked and they were at a loss.

The Szefel family were increasingly angered over the time restrictions put on them and firmly believed they’d be able to save Violet if only the new owners were more accommodating. Outraged when the new homeowners stopped answering their calls and text messages, they even had police intervene on July 31st. Speaking to both the new owners and the hired cat rescuer, officers were ensured the cat was getting food and water.

Taking to social media, the women even started a Facebook page, “Justice for Violet”, which has since been taken down. Here they publicized their anger and claimed that Violet wasn’t getting what she needed to survive. Followers showed their support however it went too far when threats to the new owners started being voiced.

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Then the day after the story hit local news media, Lisa Szefel received a shocking phone call. The Bonnie Hayes Animal Hospital was calling to inform her that someone had just dropped Violet off at their location!

She rushed over to the clinic and was greeted by Violet and lots of blinking “eye love”. They rushed her to their veterinarian so she could get a full check up and ensure she was healthy after her ordeal. On first glance however, Violet seemed to be in good health.

They never received any news from the new homeowners but both families are likely extremely happy that Violet is now where she belongs.


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