AUSTRALIA – A mischievous, young kitty has become infamous in his neighborhood after stealing dozens of personal items from backyards and clotheslines.
Ninja the ginger cat showers his owners, who currently live in Carindale, east of Brisbane, with presents like the odd socks and shoes, baseball caps, gardening gloves and even children’s clothing.
The four-year-old real-life cat burglar has gotten his claws into a string of pilfered goods since February and he continues to roam the streets of all hours of the day.
And the burglary has become so frequent that his owner Kelly McRae, who is 33, has decided to set up The Carindale Cat Burglar Facebook page in an effort to return the items back to the neighbors.
‘He steals something every day or at least every second day and if he hasn’t you’d wonder why,’ Ms. McRae said to the Daily Mail Australia.
‘I started noticing it get more of a problem since I was living here. We thought it was funny and not a big deal but we needed to give the items back before our neighbors think they are going crazy.’
And it’s not just socks the cheeky pet loves pilfering. Other items spotted around the property have included stockings, underwear and beanies.”
Ninja, who normally wanders through a radius of about two streets, also left a men’s working boot right in front of the back door after failing to get it through the cat flap.
The young tabby usually drags each and every item through the cat flap of the home before depositing the treasures in the hallway or laundry room where it often went unnoticed.
‘There are three places [hiding spots] he favours,’ Ms. McRae said.
‘The back door or the hallway – and his cat doors come in through the laundry so when there’s stuff on the floor that needs to be washed, I don’t see the stolen items until I’m folding the clothes.’
Ninja has been nabbing various, random items his whole life but the family recently decided to launch a social media campaign and hand out flyers to neighboring homes after the burglary turned into a daily habit.
Ms. McRae has also taken a photo of Ninja with a note that reads: ‘I steal my neighbor’s belongings and attempt to re-gift them to my owners.’
The family regularly posts photographs of all the items, each accompanied with a date of when the item showed up at their home and description.
‘It has been a 30 percent success rate with returning the items back to its owners,’ she stated.
Despite the items going missing from surrounding homes, Ms. McRae said luckily most of her neighbors have actually seen the humorous side to the pilfering.
‘Most of our neighbors love him,’ she admitted.
‘It is something that might annoy them but they have seen the funny side to it.
‘Ninja is very persistent, daring and a curious cat. He’s sometimes shy and tends to hide when we have visitors over but he generally prefers to be indoors.’