In a tale of hope, forgiveness and second chances, Jack the cat is back home with his people a month after he disappeared in what is believed to have been an opportunistic theft.
Jack, who has been part of the Colley family for a decade, was found deep in a drain in thick bushland at Buccan four weeks after he was taken from outside their home in Beaudesert.
Jack’s miracle survival
Jack the black and white Chinchilla is one lucky cat.
A decade ago, he was a stray at Beaudesert Bowls Club before Susie Colley’s son, Josh, and husband, Michael, brought him home.
Ten years to the week after that first stroke of luck, Jack was taken from outside the family home at Kerry Hills Estate. It prompted a month-long saga involving the police and people from near and far joining forces to help find Jack.
When Jack didn’t come in for dinner on 18 March and his food was untouched the next day, Susie put the feelers out to the neighbours before appealing via Facebook for his return.
On 23 March, a mutual friend informed Susie they saw someone post a photo to Snapchat of a cat which looked remarkably like Jack, and she said, ‘that’s definitely my cat’.
Elated, Susie arranged to collect Jack from Jimboomba KFC before receiving a message saying he had escaped and providing the name of a semi-rural street in thick bushland near the Logan River in Buccan for her to go search for him.
Walking between acreage properties felt like looking for a needle in a haystack, but when Susie requested a street number to help narrow her search, she was bewildered to receive ‘no’ for an answer.
Things got weirder when Susie discovered Jack’s disappearance had coincided with a vandalism incident in her neighbourhood that same night.
After a week of walking the streets of Buccan and getting to know local residents, she connected with the mother of the person involved in the vandalism incident.
“None of it made sense to me. I knocked on the mum’s door and said, ‘I’m sorry, I’ve come in peace,’ and she was amazing and told me exactly what happened,” she said.
“Jack was shuffled into a car; was hidden in a cage for three days at Buccan, then everything went even more pear-shaped after he escaped from there.”
Susie, who got to rescue Jack from a drain at Buccan on 18 April, was over the moon to reunite him with kids Olivia, 9, Georgia, 7, and Lachlan, 5.
“It impacted the kids a lot and I just told them to keep saying their prayers at night that he’d come home,” she said.
“I’m still confused but so many positives have come from this situation. People helped me hang onto hope and everyone was looking out for Jack.”