The Tauranga community is on the hunt for a lost cat who was accidentally taken to the city’s rubbish dump.
Tim the tabby sneaked into the back of a truck that was transporting rubbish to the Maleme Street refuse station in the suburb of Greerton.
Penny Scutt from Otūmoetai was busy getting rid of a truck-load of rubbish over the weekend, but the driver didn’t realise they had an unexpected passenger until they reached the dump.
“As they were unloading the rubbish they saw something moving, and it was Tim,” she says.
“He must have crept in there when we were putting the rubbish in.
“All of a sudden Tim leapt out. A little frightened, he ran off a bit before stopping to hear them calling him, but by the time they reached him he had jumped into the pit and took off.”
When they told Scutt what had happened, she immediately headed down to the dump to look for him but she couldn’t find him. The dump is 14km from Tim’s house.
“I went back on Sunday night, and again yesterday.
“The people at the transfer station have been lovely, and they said they will keep looking.”
Scutt also posted photos of Tim on community message boards, where people have rallied to help look for him.
There has been one reported sighting of a cat who looked like Tim near Grace Hospital in Pyes Pā, but by the time Scutt arrived he was nowhere to be seen.
The family said they are devastated to be without the much-loved pet who they’ve had for three years, since adopting him as a rescue cat.
“He’s such a poser.
“He would be loving this attention. He means so much to us. We are just hoping we can find him so that he can come back home.”