PURR-FECT! VEOLIA HELP RESCUE O’MALLEY – BUT WHAT A NAUGHTY THING DID THAT TO BIN POOR PUSSYCAT?
Once upon a time – as all good fairy stories begin – there was a pussycat called O’Malley.
O’Malley is a therapy cat for an autistic girl named Scarlett.
A therapy cat is a cat trained to help people. Autistic people see, hear and feel the world differently to other people. So people like Scarlett benefit from the human-animal interaction to help their relaxation and healing.
“O’Malley is really good therapy for my daughter” says Scarlett’s mum.
O’ Malley is ginger and white, just like in Disney’s Aristocats. He’s 18 months old and he always comes in for meals like clockwork, and he’s always there to be petted before Scarlett leaves for school and comes for a cuddle at lunchtime.
But on one Thursday night Scarlett and her mum started to get a bit worried about him as he had not come home and was missing meals.
And by Saturday Scarlett was very stressed by her broken routine.
On Sunday Scarlett’s mum posted O’Malley’s picture on Facebook, and they both searched the whole of the West Norwood estate where they live, calling his name and carrying food.
That night, after Scarlett had gone to bed, her mummy’s partner said: “I can hear him in the bin. “He can’t have got in there on his own”.
Scarlett’s mum got a torch. They could see him in the bin. So they called the fire brigade.
The fire brigade arrived but couldn’t get him out without breaking the bin open.
So Scarlett’s mum slept by the bin all night to make sure no-one dumped any more rubbish on top of him.
At 7am Scarlett’s mum rang Veolia, who collect all the rubbish from their estate. They promised someone would be there as soon as they could.
They said the bins had been emptied on Thursday so someone must have put him in there on Thursday night. They also said it was impossible for a cat to get in to the bin and close it by himself.
The nice people from Veolia came with a crane that usually lifts recycling bins onto the truck.
They said they would raise the bin off the ground just a little bit so O’Malley didn’t have very far to fall.
The driver Kevin and hiis colleague Jakub controlled the crane, carefully lifted the bin and slowly opened the bottom of it.
The waste began to fall out and soon Scarlett’s mum was able to reach in and wrap O’Malley in a towel before he could get hurt.
Scarlett’s mum took O’Malley to the vets while Veolia tidied up the rubbish. O’Malley was very dehydrated but luckily had no broken bones.
He’s now back to his normal self but Scarlett and her mum are worried that someone could be doing the same to other cats.
Robert Seear, Veolia’s general manager for south London said: “We find some very strange things in recycling bins, but this is probably the first time we’ve had to rescue a cat from one.
“We were only too pleased to help of course, and delighted to be able to reunite O’Malley with his owner. “We hope his neighbours will continue to use the bin for recyclable materials only from now on.” (Source: Lambeth council’s Love Lambeth website. Thanks to: Veolia press office)