Late Monday night, Bradford resident Melyssah DeVrye and her friend Veronica Holmes were coming out of the McDonald’s drive-thru on Holland Street when they noticed a stray cat in the parking lot with its head in a McDonald’s bag, eating old French fries.
DeVrye and Holmes immediately got out of their car to try and capture it, but were unsuccessful.
“He was absolutely terrified, but didn’t seem feral,” DeVrye said of the cat's demeanour.
The pair, who have worked in animal rescue before and both own service dogs, happened to have a fresh bag of dehydrated chicken dog treats in their car and used them in an attempt to capture the cat
“We left an entire bag of dehydrated chicken pieces on a grassy island for him,” DeVrye explained.
When that plan failed, the women decided to call animal control, but were told that they would not be able to capture the cat because they do not have a license to trap animals. They could only pick up the cat if someone had it secured.
The friends went home and decided to make a post about the cat on the Welcome To Bradford Facebook community page to see if anyone could help.
They connected with a woman named Victoria Grimshaw who works with animals and wanted to help. The three of them decided to meet at the McDonald’s on Tuesday night at 9 p.m. with Grimshaw’s trap in the field nearby.
After waiting almost three hours and no sign of the cat, Grimshaw decided to go home. Literally one minute later, at 11:50 p.m. DeVrye and Holmes were packing up the trap when they saw the cat running across the road from the Pro Oil Change shop.
The women quickly grabbed the trap they had just packed away as the cat made its way to the Scotia Bank parking lot.
This time, the ladies tried wet whitefish flavoured food in the trap and by 12:21 a.m. they had successfully caught the cat. Animal Control was called and arrived to pick up the cat at 1:30 a.m.
The cat was then taken to Huronia Veterinary in Barrie to be checked out.
At the checkup it was learned that the cat is older with a bad upper respiratory infection, blind in one eye with no teeth and underweight.
Animal control said they would be in contact with the women in the next seven days to update them on the cat’s condition after taking a course of antibiotics.
“If everything is good and he hasn’t been claimed, both Veronica and I told them (animal control) we would take him in temporarily and find a rescue that has the room, non-kill preferably, to take him,” said DeVrye.
“We’ve dubbed him Donald (Donnie for short) because of being found in the McDonald’s parking lot,” said DeVrye.
The women await an update on the cat’s condition.