Cat’s disappearance close to Disneyland sparks a 2-year story of heartache and hope

Michelle Chang thought the wind sound echoing by means of the automobile was simply her creativeness as she drove south on the 5 freeway towards Irvine. Her weekend duffel bag was within the trunk, various music crammed the air and Coco, a Snowshoe Siamese, was resting atop her kennel as she approached Disneyland.

Chang was 21 and virtually residence, excited to shock her mom with Coco’s go to on Mom’s Day weekend in 2021. The UC Santa Barbara graduate had taken the household’s beloved 8-year-old feline up north so she may have firm throughout the pandemic.

Because the sound persevered, Chang mentioned she pulled up on the facility window buttons to attempt to make the noise cease. When she rotated and appeared the place Coco had been perched, the cat wasn’t there.

“I shortly pulled to the facet of the freeway,” she mentioned. “I couldn’t discover her. I used to be in panic mode.”

Chang referred to as her youthful sister, Sarah, who helped search alongside the freeway at the hours of darkness. The sisters mentioned they half anticipated to seek out the cat alive within the bushes and half anticipated to see her useless on the freeway.

After weeks of the household looking — driving alongside the freeway and alongside Manchester Avenue the place Coco most probably went lacking, posting indicators and checking the county’s deceased animal web site  — the cat with placing blue eyes and white mitten toes, was nowhere to be discovered. Chang surmised Coco stepped on the window button and “flew out” of the automobile.

Kim Taylor, their mom, mentioned every Mom’s Day has been bittersweet since. Her eccentric, sensible, light cat who she taught to sit down on command; who favored her ears scratched, however not her stomach; and who hated folks meals, however cherished kibble, was gone.


For 2 years Mercedes and Oscar Chavez of Grants Go, Oregon, saved up cash to take a household journey to Disneyland for his or her son Gabriel’s fifteenth birthday. They introduced alongside their three different kids, ages 16, 13 and seven, and one in all Gabriel’s associates.

After arriving July 1 for his or her week-long trip, the tribe of cat lovers seen a paper plate on the bottom on the Anaheim lodge they have been staying at with remnants of dried cat meals after which spied a cat “hunkered down, laying on her facet close to the air-conditioning unit,” Mercedes Chavez mentioned. “She was panting as a result of it was so sizzling.”

Chavez gave the cat water and inquired with lodge employees in regards to the curious creature. She was given conflicting data. The cat lived at a trailer park subsequent door. The cat was nice and being cared for by lodge company who fed her eggs off the breakfast buffet. The cat was a stray and nobody may catch her.

“However this didn’t sit proper with me,” Chavez mentioned. “I stored badgering staff attempting to piece collectively the story. An actual stray is apprehensive, however I may inform at one level she had a household as a result of she was tremendous light — meowing, rolling over, rubbing towards our legs and letting us decide her up.

“She wished assist. She wished love,” Chavez mentioned.

When the cat tried to comply with the household into their lodge room on their second evening, Chavez mentioned she burst into tears. “I informed my husband that we have to get her to a protected place.”

Within the meantime, Chavez went to Goal and acquired kibble and moist meals, she mentioned. “She went loopy and devoured it.”

Chavez then appeared up cat rescue organizations. The primary one she contacted informed her they solely spayed, neutered and launched cats. However they offered a “large record” of different locations in Orange County that might probably assist.

Chavez contacted every of the roughly 20 organizations by means of e mail “any time I had the prospect” between theme park enjoyable, she mentioned.

“They both auto replied saying they aren’t taking any extra animals as a result of they’re at full capability, or they wished me to name at a particular time after which wouldn’t reply or I bought busy alerts,” she mentioned. “It was virtually inconceivable to get a reside individual to reply.”

Chavez’s logical sense thought, “I have already got two cats and we will’t journey again to Oregon with 5 children and a brand new cat.”

However her coronary heart determined, “If we will’t get assist, the cat will go residence with us.”


On July 4, “by the grace of God,” Chavez mentioned, Kindness2Cats contacted her. The group run by Jenifer Brooks and Ed Michalek assured Chavez the animal would go to a great residence. Chavez tearfully scooped up the kitty and put her within the moveable crate Brooks had dropped at the lodge.

“She didn’t battle it,” Chavez mentioned. “I do know she knew we have been going to assist her.”

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