I woke up at 3 a.m. this morning to check the food bowl on our front steps, to see if our missing cat Riley had eaten anything. The bowl was empty.
I sat outside for a little while and quietly called his name, not expecting much. For the last three days we had tried everything we could think of to find him. He is an indoor cat and had never been outside.
We put some of our dirty clothes in the front and the back yards, to give him a scent. I cracked the garage door open half a foot, put a flameless candle on the floor, next to some food and water. I even put out a litter box with dirty litter in it, to give him more of a scent to finding his way back home.
When I didn't get an answer at 3 a.m. this morning, I trudged back into the house and went into the kitchen to throw the empty foam bowl in the garbage.
I looked down and saw a big bruiser of a cat gulping water. I blinked and pinched myself, then picked him up. It was Riley, finally home after a stomach-churning three days of being missing.
He must have come through the open garage door and pushed his way through the pet door leading into the dining room, even though I had propped a heavy box there to keep our other two cats out of the garage.
Riley seems fine, but tired. We all are!
I want to thank everyone who offered their support and suggestions for how to bring him home. I can't begin to tell you how much it meant to us. Kristin and Marie in Bayville, thank for taking the time to call me because you thought you had Riley in your yards.
Thank you to the Dave and Jane Cassiere from START Animal Rescue II in North Jersey for their wonderful e-mail last night telling me not to give up.
Thank you everyone. Now I have to go pull down all those missing cat posters. Welcome home, Riley!