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Favorite story of the week includes a happy ending

Lucky to have an animal shelter and private agencies that support our pets

The improbable reunion of a lost cat and its owner is one of our favorite stories in this week’s newspaper. When Bucks Lake resident Patti DeCoe noticed a cat hovering near her property in November, she tried to get it used to her so she could catch it and find its owner. Eventually she did, and DeCoe took the cat to the county’s animal shelter where longtime employee Melissa Bishop checked to see if the cat had been chipped. It had and Bishop was able to track down the owner. Amazingly, Bishop learned that the cat had been lost in the Berry Creek area of Butte County, which had been evacuated during the Ponderosa Fire that destroyed homes and property in late August. “Iris the cat” and her owners were reunited this past weekend.

Reuniting pets and owners is a regular part of the animal shelter’s work. Bishop has an almost encyclopedic knowledge of local residents and their pets, which is displayed nearly every time an animal is posted on Facebook or the Portola-Quincy classifieds when the pets are spotted wandering a neighborhood or down the highway. Invariably, Bishop weighs in on the owner’s identity and a reunion is arranged.

Bishop used this week’s story about the lost cat to remind residents that chipping isn’t just for dogs. She advises that it’s a good idea to put a chip in all pets including cats, birds and rabbits.

Plumas County is fortunate to have knowledgeable, caring personnel running its animal shelter. In addition to Bishop, new employee Alex Saez says the job is a perfect fit for him. It’s clear that both of these individuals, as well as other staff and volunteers, are dedicated to their positions and the animals in their charge.

All are worried that the holiday season isn’t always the merriest for pets. That’s because while pets are a popular present, the decision to gift them isn’t always well thought out. And unlike returning a gift to a store, pets are often brought to the shelter. There, the animals are cared for until a new home can be found. Sometimes the cats and dogs are adopted directly out of the shelter, other times they find their way to PAWS, High Sierra Animal Rescue or Quincy Friends of Animals. All of these organizations are dedicated to the care, protection and proper placement of pets. In next week’s edition of the newspaper, space will be devoted to a story about the origins of High Sierra Animal Rescue and its subsequent growth and evolution.

The collaboration between the county’s animal shelter (operated under the auspices of the Sheriff’s Office) and the private, nonprofit agencies works well thanks to the efforts of all involved. They are all dedicated to the ensuring that pets are treated well and find love in their forever homes.

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