Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Looking for Mr. Monk

On the last day of the last year, noon-time December 31 2017, Mr. Monk vanished.
He left to go in the back yard, and I have not seen him since.

I took this photograph half an hour before he left that last day.

We have three cats, and I love them all. But Mr. Monk was, for me, the cat of a lifetime.

For eight weeks, I walked everywhere and looked, called, tapped on closed garages, rattled cat treats, and prayed. I posted with the microchip company, pasted Lost Cat posters nearby, and sent notices to all the shelters within thirty miles. I went in person to nearby shelters a few times. I let the neighbors know, posted on the neighborhood site, and spoke to people feeding feral colonies nearby.

Two different neighbors spotted a cat they thought could be Mr. Monk. We bolted immediately, both times, to check. Nope.

A kind neighbor thought she spotted a dead cat that could be him. Our car was in the garage, so she came in person with her car to take DH to check the body. Nope.

Another neighbor spotted a cat that looked like Mr. Monk on her security camera in the dead of night. She sent me the video. I looked at this lookalike and saw the makings were not the same. Nope.

Recently, through our listing on a website for lost/found animals, I got contacted by someone two neighborhoods away, asking if the enclosed photo is of our Monk. That lost kitty showed up in her backyard. His face came closest, and we spoke on the phone. The kind lady sent more photos. My heart was pounding.
Alas, another nope.

Yesterday, more than three months after we put Lost Cat posters nearby, (and the posters survived much rain and wind to still be hanging) we got contact from the chip registry that a neighbor saw our poster and may have seen our cat. We made contact with this neighbor, another photo exchange, and another nope.

I didn’t know any of these neighbors before, and felt so grateful to have their eyes and ears.

And my four-year-old soul-cat, my beloved Monk, is still missing.

While looking in person, the local animal shelter advised checking cats that are found and cats that are offered for adoption, because even microchips fail occasionally. I continue to do this every day.

In the course of looking at the cats online, I spotted one of the cats in a rescue, who needed a forever home. Something about her face and description just nagged at me. Day after day, and this kitty was still there. I did what I didn’t intend to. I made contact with the rescuer.

A few days later, this little one became our cat. DH named her Nougat, a play on “New Cat” and her coloring. He also said that should Mr. Monk miraculously return to us, well, “we’ll have four cats.”

Meet Nougat---

Little Nougat came to us with diarrhea, tapeworm, ear mites, cow-hocked hind legs, chin acne, (yup, cats can have that) a slight fever and a croupy cough. We have dealt with these, (minus her Charlie Chaplin legs, as "cow-hocked" is genetic and permanent) and with her adjustment. She’s doing beautifully, and our other cats have slowly been more accepting.

And I will never give up on Mr. Monk. I made my Instagram a one-topic site, where I can at least see him when I need to. I call it Looking for Mr. Monk.


  1. So sorry you lost your favorite kitty. A lot of people don't realize how affectionate cats really are, and how one can get so attached to them. My husband and I are both cat people and dog people. We had a cat for 19&1/2 years and our last dog for 15 years, and we still miss them. (Although we are "pet-less for the time being, since we travel a lot.) I hope you do eventually find Mr. Monk. His pictures show such a sweet personality. Glad you took in Nougat, though. He obviously has found a good home.

  2. Oh Mirka, I do hope a miracle turns up your beloved Mr. Monk. Sending hugs to you and your new little Nougat.

  3. Your post brought tears to my eyes. Thank you so much for sharing about your wonderful Mr. Monk & I am so happy about your new kitty 🐱

  4. Oh Mirka, I am so sorry you've lost Mr. Monk, that all the leads were false. I am sending prayers and asking for prayers from St. Francis and St. Anthony (just two days ago, I had the chance to venerate his remains). You have such a big heart--Nougat is beautiful!!! And I love that your husband is amenable to a four-cat household. Good man! Hugs and prayers, friend.

  5. Sorry for the loss of you beautiful Mr. Monk. Hopefully, he'll find the way back to your home soon. Animals have 6th sense for directions and a good homing beacon. Your new kitten looks adorable!

  6. Mirka, I'm so glad you dropped by my blog and thank you for the comment. I truly appreciate that. Your blog is wonderful & I look forward to your posts. I am terribly sorry about Mr. Monk. I do hope you find him or he finds his way home.

  7. I'm so sorry you haven't found Mr. Monk. Several years ago, my sister's cat disappeared the same way. I hope Nougat is easing the hurt a little, though no one will ever replace Mr. Monk. Perhaps he'll find his way home soon.

  8. Thanks, y'all. From your wishing to The Great One's ears...
    I'm grateful for good thoughts.

  9. I hope you find him. Heartbreaking for sure. Your new little addition is sure sweet. Good luck.

  10. Oh, no! I hope he comes back.

    And I have a feeling he will. I've heard similar stories from people who lost their cats, searched frantically, and gave up. Then adopted another cat. And...the original cat was found.

    Sending out cat-returning vibes, Mirka. ~~~Come home!~~ Mr.Monk is waiting out there somewhere, ready for you to pick him up.