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Gillingham railway station's three-legged cat found

A three-legged cat who lives at a railway station travelled over 20 miles across the county after he went missing.

Tripod can usually be found at the depot beside Gillingham train station.

Tripod with staff at Gillingham Rail Depot.
Tripod with staff at Gillingham Rail Depot.

The cat, who went missing on Tuesday, November 26, was reunited with depot staff last night after he was handed into Vets4Pets in Sevenoaks.

Worried employees got in touch with vets, the Cats Protection League, put posters up around the depot in Ingram Road and posted appeals via Southeastern and Animals Lost and Found Kent (ALFIK).

The appeal posted on Southeastern's Twitter page was shared over 1,100 times.

They also searched the embankments and fences around the depot trying to find him.

Nathan Ian Dove, production delivery engineer at the depot, said: “We had various unconfirmed sightings of him across our network and in the local area and over the next week we had started to lose hope of finding him.

Tripod back at home.
Tripod back at home.

“On Saturday morning, I received a notification on the ALFIK Facebook group that a cat matching Tripod’s description had been found in Otford, and had been handed in to Vets4Pets in Sevenoaks.

“On Monday night I went to Sevenoaks to go and see the cat, hoping against all hope that it was Tripod, and I really couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw it was him.

“As soon as Tripod came into the room and I called his name, he came straight up to me for his usual scratch behind the ear and general fuss.

“He really didn’t like the idea of being put into a cage for his journey back to the depot but better to be safe than sorry.

"I wouldn’t want him to go on another adventure.”

Tripod was missing for almost a week.
Tripod was missing for almost a week.

“After bringing him back to the depot, he has been showered with lots of fuss and kitty treats, and everyone is so happy to have him back.

“A special mention really should go out to the team who run ALFIK.

"Without this group, there really wouldn’t be any way that a cat found in Sevenoaks would have been linked back to Gillingham.

"We owe them a lot and have decided to ask for a small donation from the staff here at the depot to help keep this team running such a fantastic and helpful service.

“The question that everyone has been asking us is: just how did he get to Otford?

“We have two theories: the first one is that he was underneath a vehicle (one of our staff lives in Otford).

“The other theory is that he did in fact go by train but that would require changing trains.

"We will never know the answer to that question I suppose, but he has certainly had an adventure.”

“For now, he is banned from the trains but I am sure he won’t mind now he is back home enjoying all the fuss that engineers, shunters, cleaners, drivers and managers will be giving him."

Escaped animals, unusual finds and news from the RSPCA can all be found here.

Read more: All the latest news from Medway

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