Dorset

Dorset cattery gives Bruce the cat to wrong owners

Bruce the cat Image copyright Tadeu Vaccari
Image caption The cattery said it was "devastated and truly sorry for the loss of Bruce"

A cattery gave a cat back to the wrong owners and the pet then vanished from their home.

Tadeu Vaccari checked his two-year-old indoor tabby Bruce into the cattery in Christchurch, Dorset, for 20 nights while he and his wife went on holiday.

About a week in, the cattery contacted him to say there had been a mistake.

Another family took Bruce, who the cattery said was "identical" to their cat Oscar, home but Bruce, unused to life outdoors, then disappeared.

Image copyright Tadeu Vaccari
Image caption Anyone who spots Bruce, who is microchipped, has been asked to contact Missing Pets GB
Image copyright Tadeu Vaccari
Image caption Tadeu Vaccari said he was heartbroken over what had happened to two-year-old Bruce

Christchurch Cattery said it was "devastated and truly sorry for the loss of Bruce".

Dawn Pennock, from the cattery, said: "It's a very unfortunate case of mistaken identity, to the point where even the customer who collected Bruce didn't notice any differences in markings, behaviour or personality from their own cat, Oscar.

"The moment we learned of the mix-up I, along with friends and family, did all we could to locate Bruce and returned Oscar to his owner."

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Mr Vaccari said. "He's an indoor cat, he's not used to being outside. We are desperate to get him home safe. He is our baby."

He said he had also been out searching the two-mile radius between his home and Iford Lane, where two-year-old Bruce vanished, daily since he returned from his holiday.

Image copyright Tadeu Vaccari
Image caption Indoor cat Bruce, who is microchipped, was mistakenly given to another family

The cattery, which offers boarding for six cats, said it had waived the full fee for Bruce's stay, which started on 31 March.

In a statement the cattery added it had "since reviewed and updated all applicable internal processes to ensure this cannot happen again in future".

Anyone who spots Bruce, who is microchipped, has been asked to contact Missing Pets GB.

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