After reading about “Sizzle” the cat’s remarkable rescue from the Fourmile Fire last week, Lori Church’s mom called and suggested Church go online, find the news reports and consider adopting another pet into her animal-friendly home.
Church did what her mother told her, and as she was reading about Sizzle, she said she began to notice similarities between the burn victim and her cat Morgan, who had been missing for four weeks.
“My little guy had been gone, and I thought, ‘What if?'” Church said.
She called the Alpenglow Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center in Boulder, where the cat was in their care and said there was a “remote possibility” that Sizzle belonged to her. She described what Morgan looked like and decided to drive up to Boulder to take a look in person.
Church thought Sizzle looked a lot like Morgan, but she asked a veterinarian to check for a scar on his right arm where he had been injured in a cat fight to confirm his identity.
“They began peeling off bandages, and lo and behold, there was a scar,” she said.
Church, who lived in Conifer before moving to Aurora and then to Denver recently, said she never lived anywhere near Boulder and doesn’t know how Morgan got to the Boulder County foothills. When he first went missing, she assumed that he was out exploring new territory.
“After a couple of weeks, I thought maybe something bad happened to him,” she said. “But I didn’t think he was off in Boulder Canyon.”
Veterinary caregivers named the cat Sizzle after he was found badly burned and hiding under a rock following the Fourmile Fire, which ignited Sept. 6 and destroyed 169 homes. He suffered severe burns to his paws and nose, along with singed whiskers and an injury to his side, according to Humane Society officials.
“The trauma he had to go through,” Church said. “Who could imagine? He’s a little trooper. He was always Mr. Impervious.”
Church got Morgan three years ago at a mobile adoption unit at Petco. “He put his paw through the cage and pulled my finger to him,” she said. “He adopted me.”
Sizzle, who is about 4 years old, is staying at the Humane Society until he’s well enough to go home.
“They really want to see new skin growth before he goes home,” she said. “But I would really love to have him back.”
Lisa Pedersen, chief executive officer of the Humane Society, said the staff is thrilled about the reunion.
“We’ve had some wonderful reunions of pets with their guardians during and after this tragic fire,” Pedersen said. “Knowing this cat’s remarkable story, it makes us wonder if he would have ever been found if he hadn’t been injured and rescued in the fire.”
Church said she thought her cat was microchipped, but the veterinarian at the Humane Society couldn’t find the sensor. Church said the chip may have fallen out or was never implanted as she had been led to believe.
Sizzle was the only domestic pet of the 115 rescued by Boulder animal control officers during the Fourmile Fire that had not been reunited its owners, according to Humane Society spokeswoman Kim Sporrer. But Humane Society officials are reminding people that there might be other animals that remain unaccounted for because their guardians lost their homes and assumed their pets had died.
For example, another 3-year-old black cat — which had not been reported missing — was brought to the Humane Society of Boulder Valley last week after someone found him in the Sugarloaf area suffering from severe burns on all four paws.
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[SOURCE: The Daily Camera]