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After a man allegedly catnapped a beloved bodega cat named Boka or Kediboka on July 29, people who loved him rallied to get him back. Boka is a Russian Blue cat who resides at the Green Olives Deli and Grill in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

On that Friday, the bodega cat went missing. At first, his humans thought that the cat might be out visiting with his girlfriend, a cat living nearby.

Green Olives Deli and Grill in Park Slope, Brooklyn

Green Olives Deli and Grill in Park Slope, Brooklyn via YouTube

After the cat didn’t return all weekend, a surveillance camera revealed what happened as a young man scooped up the cat from outside the deli on the sidewalk in broad daylight.

However, this person may have underestimated how much people loved this bodega cat. Suddenly, the story was everywhere, and everyone wanted to help bring home the cat ASAP. Over 100,000 people saw the video on TikTok alone.

Images, media via Instragram/kediboka

Boka and The Bodega Cat Snatcher

The man’s image began appearing on the local news and street flyers as the residents who adored the cat were furious. By then, Boka had developed a loyal following on social media too. The man was dubbed “the Bodega cat snatcher.”

“The cat was so friendly,” said Majeed Albahari, owner of the deli. “Everyone in the neighborhood used to come here all the time just to play with the cat,” he told Eyewitness News ABC7NY (see video below).

Majeed adopted Boka in January when he was just a two-week-old kitten. 

Appearing on the news, he said he wouldn’t press charges against the man for snatching the cat. Possibly, he thought he was helping the cat, but this cat is well-cared for.

Video by Eyewitness News ABC7NY:

Boka the Bodega Cat Returned

Wonderfully, everyone was relieved when a couple returned the kitty to the deli on a Friday afternoon in August. It was about a week after the man took him.

There were “lots of pets and snuggles.” Customers of the deli dropped off flowers to celebrate the reunion.

Boka the bodega cat in a bag

Image via Instagram

CBS New York reported that the couple posted a missing link about Boka on Facebook. Then an unidentified man who was friends with the man in the video told them he knew the cat’s location and brought them the cat. 

“He said he spent hours to convince the guy,” said Majeed Albahari, who said he might be keeping the cat home after the stressful experience.

Deli owner holds Boka

Image via YouTube

Video by CBS New York:

This Bodega Cat is Family

According to FOX 5, someone involved asked one of the deli owners why they wanted their cat back. He responded that it was because he was their family. When he later saw the cat return, he was overjoyed.

Following the incident, Majeed says he is being very careful to keep Boka safe.

“I take Boka’s safety and happiness very seriously,” he shared to Instagram. “He is fed, he is loved and cared for, he has been to the vet to be neutered and microchipped and have his shots, all before this incident happened. We are doing our best to make sure that he is not lost or stolen again. When he goes out now, he is with me and is wearing his red harness, which is attached to his leash. In case he sneaks out, he also has his collar with tags, and soon will have a Tractive GPS that is being kindly sent by Caluminati, who helped Boka’s story go viral.”

Majeed Albahari with the kitten

Now they are returning to their lives and enjoying each day together.

“Look forward to more videos of Boka happily living his life. I look forward to spending it with him,” Majeed said.

Two pictures of Bodega cat

You can follow Boka on Instagram.

Video by FOX 5 New York:

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