Cat Found on Howard University Campus, dropped off at New York Ave Human Society


“Dear PoPville,

We found a cat last night on a vent on the Howard University Campus near the football field (so about Georgia and Fairmont Ave). He/she had no tags and is dark grey color. It approached us quickly when we fed it and was very affectionate as well. We dont know if it ran out accidentally from someone’s home or if it was abandoned but definitely not a cat that had grown up outside. We brought it to the Washington Humane Society on New York Ave as it’s getting very cold and we took the attached picture of the cat upon arrival to the shelter. Hopefully it can be re-united with its owner or find a loving, happy home.”

94 Comment

  • epric002

    pretty kitty! thanks for doing the right thing and getting him safe and warm. hopefully s/he will be reunited with his/her people soon.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Such a pretty kitty. I hope she’s home safe soon.

  • OP: does the kitty have a notch missing from one ear?

    • epric002

      i don’t think the WHS would take in a cat who was ear tipped, but i could be wrong…

    • If it were eartipped (the sign that a feral cat has been spayed/neutered and vaccinated), I believe it would be the cat’s left ear.
      We can’t see the top of the cat’s right ear in the photo, but the left ear looks to be intact.
      If I remember correctly, some shelters won’t take cats that have been eartipped, on the grounds that they’re feral/community cats and should be left where they are. The problem with that is that sometimes perfectly tame cats that have been abandoned and have joined feral colonies end up getting eartipped.

      • Emmaleigh504

        WHS eartips cats that they then later adopt out (Donna Martin), so it seems mean for them not to take any eartipped cats.

        • Yeah, I was trying to remember whether Donna was an eartipped cat!
          I wonder why they would eartip her if they weren’t planning to return her to where they found her. Maybe they don’t assess the cats for feral-ness until after the surgery and eartipping?

          • Emmaleigh504

            They told me they had planned to release her, but she was too sweet, so they put her up for adoption. Maybe they don’t assess them until after surgery.

  • I think this cat lives at Common Good City Farm and roams the neighborhood.

  • she/he was not ‘ear tipped’ when we found her and dropped her off. she was wayyy too eager for human attention when we found her on the backside of Howard’s football field so we believe she/he has been an indoor cat before. he climbed right into the cat carrier with no fuss too.

    • Climbed right into the carrier- sounds like a very ideal cat for adoption!

      • Except, in all likelihood, he’s not available for adoption. The original poster stole someone’s cat thinking they were doing a good deed. It’s not good. Leave indoor-outdoor cats alone. Don’t know if that super-friendly cat has a family? Assume he does; they’re probably the ones that made him so friendly, and they are probably expecting him to meow at the back door like usual. It makes me so sad to think about the family whose cat isn’t coming home…
        I hope one of the posters below who recognizes him can contact his family. If this was last night, they’re probably frantic by now.

        • And this is why I think people who still keep cats outdoors in cities are ill-advised (I’m going to be nice and not use the names I’d like to use to describe people who let cats outside- a practice that is not recommended by HSUS, ASCPA, and most humane animal groups). By telling people to not turn a cat into the Humane Society without verifying if there is an owner (impossible task), you condemn stray and abandoned cats to the streets (“well, he might have an owner, who knows, I’m not going to act”). When someone posts about losing their outdoor cat, it takes a lot for me to scrounge up an ounce of sympathy. You can’t care that much about an outdoor cat if you knowingly subject it to potential cat fights, moving cars, dog attacks, diseases, and the list goes on…

          • Every had a stray (not a rescue or one from a shelter but one off the streets) or a feral cat? They freak out at being indoors all the time.

          • Listen, I’m aware that letting a cat come and go is imperfect. I don’t love the risks. But you know what’s really cruel? Adopting an animal that grew up with fresh air and new smells and freedom, and then forcing it to adapt to living in your stuffy, (relatively) stimulus-free house.
            You get the animal you get. You give it the best life you can. And in some cases, that means letting it go outside.
            There aren’t any true stray cats that are totally friendly to strangers. The only cats that will approach and socialize with a stranger are the ones who are used to interacting with friendly humans every day.
            I’m sticking with my position: leave the cat alone. Put out some food or a blanket if your humanitarian heart is breaking. But do not snatch a cat if you don’t know its situation. (And you can know its situation, but it takes time and patience. I’ve TNRed several strays, but only after seeing them around for weeks, observing behavior and movements, etc. Not just cause I saw a cold kitty one time. God, the HS is probably going to mutilate (“eartip”) that beautiful kitty. I would be LIVID.)

        • I think it’s way off base to say they “stole” the cat. It was very, very cold last night and they took the cat to the shelter where it could be cared for. If they had actually stole someone’s cat, you wouldn’t be reading about it here on PoP, would you? If you have an indoor-outdoor cat, it should be chipped and have a collar with your contact information on it.

        • I don’t care if you’d be mad, this person did the right thing on a very cold night. plus it’s illegal to have an outdoor cat in the district.

          • I don’t care about your skewed sense of right and wrong. Go back to your kindergarten lessons about not touching stuff that isn’t yours. It’s really that simple. Don’t touch my cat. Or, rather, scritch his ears, accept the fur he will happily rub all over you, etc. And then leave him where you found him. He will be meowing through the mail slot in a minute, and I will let him in.

          • +1000, they did the right thing and I can’t believe anyone would argue that.

            WHS initially lists them on their website without eligibility for adoption for a set length of time to give any owner a chance to pick them up. There is no penalty to the owner. If no one comes forward, they are listed as eligible for adoption.

            If you do let your cat wander outside, you should have a collar, tags, and a microchip. But given that it IS illegal in DC (& unsafe!), if you really want to let your cat wander outside, move to the country!

            But I’m sensitive to this because it’s exactly how we got our sweet kitty last year – rescued him from the snow, turned him over to WHS, no one claimed him, so we gave him a loving home.

          • No, even in the country you should not let your cat outdoors. Shortens the lifespan of the cat considerably (by about half), not to mention those of mice and rodents in the area.

          • This Internet-tough-person act is getting old. It’s been pointed out over and over that you’re in the wrong here, both legally and according to the advice given by every reputable animal advocacy group out there. So if you’re gonna go all Psycho/Francis from “Stripes” about people touching your cat, don’t let your cat outside. Just like the law says. Which, by the way, you violate at your own risk — no one else’s.

          • wdc- no collar, no chip, not yours.

          • I’d be curious to hear what the actual owner has to say when they get the cat back (assuming it had an owner) — that’s really what’s important.

          • HaileUnlikely

            The wind chill was in the teens or at best twenties last night. All of my neighbors with indoor/outdoor cats had them inside last night. The Howard football field is some distance from the nearest homes. I have a fair amount of difficulty believing that a cat would wander that far from the nearest that it’s home could possibly be when it was that cold. I think the possibility that this cat was abandoned is basically a best-case scenario. Worst case scenarios include the possibility that the poor cat has an owner dumb enough to think it made sense to send the cat outside when it was that cold ,as well as the possibilities that the cat’s wonderful owner was incapacitated or deceased. Your accusing the OP of having a skewed sense of right and wrong is about ten times more fvcked up than accusing me of having a skewed sense of right and wrong if I find a wallet on the ground and turn it in to the police.

          • +1. Wdc may love his/her cats but letting a cat outdoors in a busy city is basically begging for the cat to get hit by a car. In a suburb or rural area maybe that makes more sense, but not a densely populated urban area. It’s just irresponsible.

    • special_k

      Perhaps you can post a flier near where you picked the cat up so if her guardian is not web savvy, they can still find him/her. I believe the cat you found is now IDed by WHS as female and they are calling her Nimbus.

      • That is my “policy” for rescuing cats that do not seem like they should be out – post waterproof flyers around the blocks where it was found, knock on nearby doors, post to lost & found lists and Craigslist etc. Not everyone who owns a cat is constantly connected to the internet or able to go out and look for them when they wander off. We owe the owners a bit of due diligence. You never know if it escaped & owners are frantic, or if its owners are too casual/irresponsible about it being outdoors, or what. But yes with the bitter cold, that cat needed to be indoors for these few days until its situation is figured out.

        • Also worth noting – our well-intentioned (but not always thinking clearly) landlord basically kidnapped a neighbor’s cat once. She said she just moved her off the street into the nearby alley, but the cat never returned home (and her new kittens had to be taken to the shelter for hand-feeding etc). Knock of people’s doors or leave notes! It’s not hard! (Also, get your cats spayed/neutered and keep them indoors……. issue for another time).

    • Did you happen to notice if his tail was curled up?

  • Oh, he looks just like my childhood cat! Bless you Smokey (yeah, 6 year old me wasn’t terribly creative) for letting me dress you up in my doll clothes and drag you around the house.

    • Emmaleigh504

      We had a grey kitty that we called Kitten. The kids and the adults could not agree on a name for a really long time, and since she was a kitten. Her name ended up being Shadow, but she was always Kitten.

      • I Dont Get It

        My parents were teachers so each litter of kitten’s names had to be a learning experience such as characters from Romeo and Juliet, Heroes of the Civil war or perfumes from the 40s. Admittedly we had a very fertile cat who lived a long time and at the end we were running out of ideas.

      • We had a cat growing up that started out life as Kitty but then became Mother Kitty. She was famous for having kittens either in the dryer or in the bed of one sibling

      • Aglets

        We had a grey/ Russian blue cat that we called ‘Grey Baby’

  • This is not the cat that is often seen at Common Good City Farm. Our “farm kitty” has a real home on V Street and is a tabby. We hope this kitty finds her home.

  • That is very handsome kitty. And if no one claims him his personality seems like one that would make him a good snuggle.

  • No matter how sweet, I could never adopt a cat that looks like this because I could not get beyond that it looks like the cat from the movie Pet Cemetery (and the horrible, horrible scene where the little kid cuts the old man’s achilles…ugh). I know that’s ridiculous, but I can’t help it. I do hope that someone without my issues adopts him/her though.

    • Hey Ward One- don’t you worry- this cat reminds me of my cat growing up. In fact, I inquired about this beautiful female cat only to find out the Humane Society named it the SAME NAME as my cat growing up- Nimbus. So I may adopt it if the true owner doesn’t come forward!!! 🙂

  • On May 11, 2014 I saw a cat on a block very close to where you found this one (between Sherman and Georgia on either Harvard St. or Hobart Pl.) that looks very similar to this one. It was very friendly so I assumed that it wasn’t a stray (although it had no collar). I have two pictures that I can share.

    • I think I know that cat. He lives in our neighborhood. Definitely indoor-outdoor–I wouldn’t worry about him. Super friendly!

      • Lerner – what neighborhood? Do you know the owners? Can you print out his picture with “FOUND” in huge bold letters and hang on a couple street posts? The picture could also tell people to call the Washington Humane Society.

        • Jane,

          Sorry if it’s not entirely clear. Lerner is replying to my post in which I talk about another cat that looks very similar to the one at the top of this page. I thought that it might be the same cat as the one at the top of the page, but from Lerner’s and brwau’s replies to SA’s post below, it seems likely that they are different cats, and if this is the case, then the cat in question (the one that Lerner and I are talking about, not the one that is at the Humane Society) is not lost. I apologize if my post has caused confusion. The cat in my picture is not necessarily a lost cat. I hope it is clear, but please let me know if not.

  • I don’t approve of this. Ever seen a frozen cat? No, me neither. You should have left him where he was. What if the owners (and he OBVIOUSLY has owners) aren’t web savvy enough to find out where you snatched him off to?? If someone picked up my (very friendly, collar-escape-artist) cat from my block and took him to the shelter, I would probably track down the “good citizen” and make them pay whatever fee I was charged to get him back.
    People, do not pick up cats that don’t belong to you. There are no leash laws for cats. And cats do not get “lost”. They wander off, they wander back, barring busybody interference.

    • DC Code 8-1808(a) (“Prohibited Conduct”) says you’re wrong: “No owner of an animal shall allow the animal to go at large.” Besides, what exactly would you do to “make” the person give you the money?

      • Also, is it not common sense for someone who is missing a pet to PICK UP A PHONE and call the humane society first? That’s probably what I’d do. And in that case, they’d find them right away!

      • Yup. Lady at animal control confirmed it was illegal when my mother-in-law asked the following question regarding a “sick looking” possum, MIL: “You’re not going to come get it? What if it attacks my cats?” Animal control: “Ma’am, are you aware that it is against the law to have an outdoor cat?”

    • They also get abandoned. In your world, we wouldn’t help those cats either. With outdoor cats, it is hard to tell if they are lost, abandoned, or just an “outdoor cat”- something that should be illegal in my mind and something that is forbidden by most rescue societies. Very much disagree with your ideas on this.

      • It is illegal in DC to have an outdoor cat.

      • With respect to the outdoor cat issue: I think it’s a lot more complicated than people who say no no never are letting on. Speaking as someone who’s rescued several ferals, a cat that has once been a stray may make a very good pet, but it’s very unlikely that the cat will be happy without being permitted to go outside. You can’t force that kind of lifestyle change on an adult cat unless they’re ok with it or you’ll just make them miserable, which defeats the point. Indoor outdoor cat situations are not ideal, but they’re very necessary in some situations. Please be less quick to judge.

        • Emmaleigh504

          Having an indoor/outdoor or outdoor cat comes with a lot of risks, one of which is that someone will take it to the pound b/c they think it’s been lost or abandoned. Put collars with contact info on the cat and chip it to be safe.

        • HaileUnlikely

          I’m not going out of my way to be judgmental toward anyone who keeps and indoor/outdoor cat; however, any such person who gets angry at a well-intentioned individual who mistakes their cat for a would-be popsicle and takes them to a shelter needs a good slap upside the head.

    • If you allow your cat to go outdoors, the onus is on you to make sure he wears a collar with his information and something like “IND/OUT CAT” so no one mistakenly thinks he’s lost.
      Cat frequently gets out of his collar? Make sure he’s microchipped and that the contact information is up to date.
      All too often, people in D.C. simply abandon cats, thinking that cats can “fend for themselves,” or that it’s “kinder” than taking the cat to the shelter. There is no reason that people should assume that a friendly cat without tags is someone’s indoor/outdoor cat.
      “What if the owners (and he OBVIOUSLY has owners) aren’t web savvy enough to find out where you snatched him off to??” People have been taking lost animals to municipal animal shelters for decades; there is no particular web-savviness required here. (If the people who found the cat had kept her at their house, rather than taking her to the NY Ave. shelter, that would be another matter.)

    • HaileUnlikely

      Whether you approve of this matters not one bit. The mechanism by which you could make the OP pay you does not exist.

  • It looks like a Chartreux, a double-coated gray cat that French monks used to own. I had one as a kid named Iggy and they are very muscular, strong, quiet, and mellow cats. Not very snuggly, but I could be wrong. This is based on my experience with my kitty.

  • To the person who found the cat:

    Did you happen to notice if his tail was curled up? I thought it was my neighbor’s cat, so I went up there, but this cat’s tail was straight, he was very reserved and sad. Nothing like the cat I know. Do they sedate the animals at the animal shelters? He looked drugged…

    This is the cat I am looking for

    Please let me know if you noticed if his tail was curled. Thank you.

    • special_k

      Is your neighbor’s cat female? Because this cat is a girl.

    • To the person who posted this picture: does your neighbor live in Admo/Columbia Heights? As I said above, I think I know that cat–big grey guy, a little bit fat, very friendly? He hangs out in our alley on Euclid st quite frequently. If it’s the same one, definitely not at the Humane Society: I saw him out there earlier today.

    • Hi there, thanks for posting the pics. We both looked at your pics and are pretty sure that the cat we found was not the one. The coloring is the same but it didn’t have a curly tail –I’m sorry and good luck with your search. We took a couple of other pics at the shelter if you think that might be helpful to your neighbor.

    • Hi SA,

      I originally posted the pictures that you are looking at. I took the pictures back in May. Super friendly cat. Anyway, as brwau mentioned, they might not be the same cat. After looking at the pictures side-by-side myself, there are noticeable differences (although they are very similar colored so it could be a lighting issue). One difference that I notice is that there is a dark line going across the bridge of the nose of the cat in my pictures, which does not appear int he cat of this picture (which rather has a lighter patch between its eyes).

      Anyway, I hope you find the cat that you are looking for, but as I mentioned, the pictures that I took were not necessarily of a cat that recently went missing, so unless your neighbors informed you that their cat is missing, as Lerner said, their cat might still be around.

  • Thanks so much for posting this. It may be destiny for me. I inquired about this cat and they told me it was a female named Nimbus. My jaw dropped. This was the name of my cat growing up. My Nimbus looked exactly like this Nimbus except my original cat was a boy and this Nimbus is a girl. I actually inquired about this cat because of the striking resemblance to my own cat as a child.

    • If you adopt this cat, let us know! (And send pics to Afternoon Animal Fix!)

      • I sure will!! I am meeting her later this week early next…so i will send on pics with an update. THANK YOU so much for posting this. I originally came here the other day to get an update on the power loss in Dupont…and saw this! Yay!

    • Woah, it really is fate. You should totally adopt her if she isn’t claimed!

      • I’m working with the Human Society as we speak to potentially adopt Nimbus the Cat. I’ll give her an amazing home and an amazing life.

  • Someone in the area should put up posters just in case the owner isn’t online much. 🙁

  • Yes, I have seen a frozen cat. I’ve also seen cats hit by cars, tortured my neighborhood kids, and dead from eating a poisoned rodent.
    Cats might like the outdoors, but that doesn’t mean they are able to fight against everything that happens to them outdoors.
    I’ve also had outdoor cats go missing before the days of the internet. We went to shelters when they said there was a cat matching out description. It’s not a stretch that a person who is not internet savvy would do the same.

  • Apparently this kitty comes up for adoption on the 9th if unclaimed.

  • And if anyone’s kitty-loving heart is inspired by this post to think about adopting – I have a wonderful pair of 3 month old brothers I’m currently fostering! Playful and affectionate – see them here on Craigslist

    • victoria- if Nimbus doesn’t work out…they look adorbs. Do you happen to know if they are good with dogs?

      • IIRC, Victoria has a dog, so I imagine they are.
        I hope you and Nimbus prove to be a match, though — not only does the name coincidence suggest that it’s destiny, Nimbus is an adult and it’s harder for adult cats to get adopted than it is for kittens.

        • Me too- I should hear something today or tomorrow about Nimbus. My hope is that I get the call tomorrow so I have more of a window to get over there to visit her as opposed to after work next week.

  • His name is Curly (at least thats what we call him) as his tail has a kink in it. He lives on Fairmont st but seems to be our neighborhood cat that everyone feeds. Im not sure if he really belongs to anyone. He is a great cat that is very very friendly. I hope that he will go to a good home.

  • All- this story has a happy ending. I went to the Humane Society on Saturday afternoon and met with Nimbus. She was very friendly and started purring right away. I signed the papers and took her home. Right now she is resting comfortably and getting used to her new digs. She was clearly someone’s abandoned pet because she followed me around the apartment for a bit and her litter box manners are impeccable. She gets very little sand outside the box. I will send pics to PoP soon! 🙂

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