A cat with one less life

Bob Pull with Spotty, standing in front of the shipping container that was Spotty’s home for nearly a month.

Bob and Elin Pull recently moved from California to the Palouse.

The two are staying in a trailer on their daughter’s property north of Moscow while they build their own home between Moscow and Troy. The Pulls also have a 40-foot shipping container which sits on their daughter’s property with many of their belongings stuffed inside. It arrived April 21.

On the night of April 24 the Pulls heard crying from inside the container.

Bob opened the door and spotted a cat on top of a locker.

“I’m going, ‘That’s our cat,’ ” Bob said. “ ‘What is our cat doing here? We did not bring a cat here.’ ”

Bob said the barn cat they call Spotty, who was supposed to remain on their California property, was in the container with no known food and water for about 25 days. Spotty presumably entered the container while it was being packed.

“I don’t know how she’s alive, but she’s in there,” Bob said he told his wife after discovering the stowaway.

Bob said Spotty, who was extremely skinny, drank a lot of water and ate a little food that first night. The cat is back to eating a normal amount of food and is regaining the weight she lost. She hangs around their daughter’s Moscow property, mostly on a tractor or wood pile.

“There’s a mass exodus of people from California,” Elin said. “I guess the animals want to go too.”

The Pulls continue to ask themselves how the cat survived. Generally, cats can live a few days without water and a couple weeks without food.

Bob said the only food in the shipping container were nonperishable foods in plastic bins and he could not imagine the cat would have been able to access it. The container is packed tightly with their belongings, so he nor his wife has been able to identify food that has been eaten.

Bob said perhaps the cat drank water from the condensation on the metal walls of the container.

Bob said Spotty, who is 4, would run loose on their California property and in their barns while eating mice and gophers. He said he and his wife also fed her. The couple left Spotty, or so it thought, with the new owners of the property.

Bob said this wasn’t Spotty’s first hardship.

He said when the cat was about 6 months old, she broke her leg, possibly from getting in the engine of a car or perhaps from getting run over by one. Bob said she recovered with no treatment.

“So that was life one, that (the shipping container incident) was life two,” Bob said. “She’s got seven left. I don’t know what she’s going to do with them.”

Cabeza can be reached at (208) 883-4631, or by email to gcabeza@dnews.com.

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