Penelope the cat’s peculiar story of her time away from home came to a happy close on Friday, as the black feline returned to her owner.
Her homecoming also brought a sigh of relief to her neighbours, the Victoria HarbourCats.
“When she went missing, we were quite concerned,” said Christian Stewart, the baseball team’s assistant general manager.
The black cat has become somewhat of an unofficial mascot of the HarbourCats. She tends to make the half-a-block stroll from her owner’s flower shop to the baseball club’s office.
“Often times it will stray over to our front porch, lie in the sun, or it’ll come in to visit us if we have our door open,” Stewart said. “With us being the HarbourCats, we kind of deemed her our honourary harbour cat and she’s gotten to know a few of our staff members pretty well.”
The team got some bad news last month as the pandemic shuttered another season for all of the West Coast League’s Canadian teams – meaning no dog days of summer for the HarbourCats. That’s why it was a hit of much-needed good news on Friday morning when Stewart got an email from Penelope’s owner, saying the cat showed up safe and sound on the back porch.
“Someone was obviously taking good care of her because she didn’t look like she’d been exposed to the elements for the last week and a half,” Stewart said. “She’s an adorable cat and gives everybody love.
“She seems to be healthy, she seems to be happy, she’s back home and that’s the good news.”
Victoria police were originally treating Penelope’s disappearance as a possible theft, prompting them to release a photo of a woman who they then thought could be a suspect. The woman had picked up a black cat in the same area where Penelope disappeared and walked away with it.
On May 6, VicPD issued an update saying they identified and located the woman in the photo, who turned out to just be taking her own cat to the vet when she was captured by a security camera.
Stewart said that it was just positive to see the community come together and try to find Penelope. He said people are going through so much right now that it’s nice to rally around a nice, simple story like a missing cat coming home.
“We’re very happy to get her back and very happy to see that she’s back home.”
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