Lucky escape for missing kitten

Jess is down to eight lives after long distance journey ended in rescue from a Barnstaple stream...

A Braunton family whose missing kitten was discovered in a Barnstaple stream are thrilled to have her back safe and well thanks to the swift action of a Barnstaple teenager plus modern technology.

Five month old Jess went missing from the Velator home she shares with the Norman family on December 28 – but despite scouring the neighbourhood and making enquiries, the little black and white cat was nowhere to be found.

Heartbroken, mum Helen, dad Andy and their sons Bradley and Taylor feared the worst, but on New Year’s Day they received a call from Barnstaple Cats Protection to say she had been found.

Sue Carder from Barnstaple CP said the bedraggled kitten had been found by a 16-year-old girl named Courtney on New Years Eve, in a stream between Newport and Whiddon Valley.

“She said she kept hearing a cat meow as she walked past,” explained Sue.

“She spotted her in the stream, so took her home, dried her out and called us. When fosterer Kay Twine scanned her for a microchip, we were soon able to reunite her with her family.”

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It was unlikely Jess could have survived for much longer on her own as she had been very cold and wet when found.

Jess and her brother Stig were rehomed with the Normans by the charity a few months before. Most animal charities, including Cats Protection, now micro chip their charges before they go out for adoption. The chip is programmed with the owner’s contact details.

But how a small cat made her way from Velator to the other side of Barnstaple remains a mystery…

“All we can think is she must have jumped in a car and hidden away, it seems unlikely she walked from here to Barnstaple,” said Helen.

“They are lovely cats and have quite a bit of character. The micro chip was a god send, otherwise I don’t think we would have got her back.”

Both the family and the charity thanked Barnstaple teenager Courtney for her quick actions.

Market Veterinary Centre practices in Barnstaple and South Molton are running a micro chipping campaign, with chipping at �10 per pet for January.

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