Clancy the Cat didn’t show a lot of interest when I dropped in to the Humane Society Dawson
(HSD) shelter to visit him a couple of weeks ago. The big orange tabby looked up at me sleepily and curled his tail back around his feet before closing his eyes contentedly.
Clancy is a little out of his comfort zone, according to shelter coordinator Danielle Thorne. He arrived in Dawson during the summer, along with Bill Buries, his traveling companion. They hail from Penticton, where Buries acquired Clancy from the AlleyCATS Alliance back in 2012.
Bill and Clancy had done quite a bit of traveling in a camouflage patterned RV, and their spot at the Bonanza Gold Hotel and RV Park would have been nothing new to the cat. He’d always been allowed to wander during their two years together, and he’d always come back to roost before it was time to pull out again.
Last summer he didn’t make it. Bill waited for a few weeks, but no Clancy.
Bill had been persistent, Thorne recalls. He reported Clancy missing and haunted the HSD shelter hoping for news.
“He was in here almost every day asking, ‘Have you seen my cat?’ He set traps. He really tried.”
He finally assumed the cat had either gone feral or had been killed by wild animals, and he went home.
But Clancy did eventually return to the motel, and was seen as a stray around the place, but no one was able to catch him until finally, one day in November, Thorne got a call from a woman staying at the hotel. She was about to leave and was wondering what to do about this orange cat that she had enticed into her car with some cat food.
“He was so hungry he tore open the bag, she told me,” says Thorne.
She was tempted to adopt him but she had some cats back home, so it didn’t seem practical.
Thorne recalled the story of the missing orange cat and began to put the two stories together. She had Buries’ contact information and telephoned him. He was surprised, but pleased.
Once Clancy was back at the shelter, Thorne and veterinarian John Overell were able to confirm his identity by means of an embedded chip and an exchange of photos with AlleyCATS Alliance.
Clancy was very thin when he first came to the shelter, and all he’s really wanted to do is sleep and eat since his arrival. He’s been chewed on by something, probably the local foxes, which can be seen all around town and out on the highway this winter, and he suffered from some frostbite, but he’s in remarkably good shape for a domestic cat living rough from July to November.
Thorne says the folks at the AlleyCATS Alliance are raising funds to send Clancy home to Penticton, but maybe not to Bill Buries. After a few months without a pet companion, Buries took another from the same shelter and he’s not sure how two cats would get along.
Thorne thinks that there’s not likely to be any problem finding Clancy a new home.
“They think he’ll be adopted out in no time as he is quite a sweetheart.”
Also, he’s a cat with an interesting story.
As Thorne puts it, “We all assumed that Clancy was as a goner. He is a little worse for wear from living outside in the cold, starving, and fending off foxes, but he is going to survive.”