Stowaway cat Bonnie is back where she belongs

HOME SAFE Amy Paffey with her pet cat Bonnie.    Picture: Malcolm Wells (110884-5301)
HOME SAFE Amy Paffey with her pet cat Bonnie. Picture: Malcolm Wells (110884-5301)
Alex Wardle, from Lee-on-the-Solent, collapsed at home and tragically died in March 2016, aged 23. 

From left: Alex's father, Stephen Wardle, sister Gemma Wardle, Alex Wardle and his mother, Denise Wardle.

Gosport family to keep Alex’s legacy alive by taking part in Great South Run

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WHEN Bonnie the cat went missing, Amy Paffey feared she had seen the last of her.

But the seven-year-old was over the moon when the adventurous moggy turned up safe and well four days later.

The pet had stowed away on a builder’s van who was working at Amy’s house and was discovered in Bishop’s Waltham.

Amy’s mum Mandy, of Auriol Drive, Havant, had spent days searching for the cat after she went missing.

Amy and her sisters Samantha, 12, and Kirsty, 15, were heartbroken and, despite plastering the area with posters and continually searching for the kitty, they started to think they had lost her for good.

Mandy said: ‘Our house was so miserable when Bonnie was gone – the girls were devastated.

‘Samantha was taking Bonnie’s cat bed to her own bed and crying into it.

‘We all thought she wasn’t coming back.

‘Even the dog was crying and acting very strangely when she was gone.

‘She’s an indoor cat and it’s unusual for her to be out longer than half an hour and even then she doesn’t go any further than the garden so we knew something was wrong.

‘Four days later we got a call from the builder who was doing some work for us in the garden.

‘He just said “I have a very familiar looking cat at my legs” but he was at his own house in Bishop’s Waltham.’

It’s thought the troublesome kitten hitched a lift in builder Chris Wigley’s van and managed to travel the whole journey without him noticing she was there.

Chris, 44, of Elberry Farm, said the cat was found in good health but smelled strongly of engine oil.

He said: ‘She was wandering around my yard when I spotted her.

‘I was a bit shocked – I knew Mandy’s cat was gone but didn’t realise it was me who’d taken her away.

‘She must’ve been in my van but I honestly don’t know where she could’ve been. I’ve looked everywhere and can’t see anywhere she could hide. What a little adventure she’s had. She’s a very lucky cat – they should rename her Lucky.’

After the cat was found, Chris’ children, Lex, six, and Kyla, also six, fed and nursed Bonnie until the Paffeys arrived to take her home.

On the way there Mandy’s husband, Mark collected their youngest daughter, Amy, from Brownies and took her on a surprise visit to the farm.

Mandy added: ‘Amy was thrilled to bits when she saw Bonnie again, she took it particularly hard when she was missing because she’s so young.

‘We’re all so happy to have her back home, she definitely won’t be going that far away again.’