ABILENE, Texas - Can you put a price tag on a missing loved one? One Abilene pet owner says the answer is no.
Jody Klotz is an avid pet lover and saving stray animals is a cause close to her heart. She rescued both her dogs from the streets of Abilene. She rescued one of her cats, close to death, in Costa Rica.
"I've loved animals since I was a little girl," said Klotz. "They are absolutely my family."
Klotz placed an ad in the Abilene Reporter-News when her cat Terra went missing in 2007, and she has kept it running ever since.
"I can't think of money more well spent then on love," said Klotz. She estimates that she spends about $500 per year to keep the ad going.
"There's a part of me that thinks I should let it go," said Klotz. "It's painful to hold on to hope." However, she said she won't until Terra's 15th birthday.
"If the opportunity exists that someone's going to realize somehow she's my cat that I lost...that I love...that I grieve...well if I don't have that ad in the paper I exclude that possibility," said Klotz.
Now her cat Luna is also missing. She's been gone since last week.
Klotz has posted a flyer on nearly every door and post downtown, hoping someone will find Luna and bring her home. She also visits the Abilene Animal Shelter every day, hoping to find Terra, and now, Luna.
She acknowledges that some may think she has put too much into searching for the felines.
"We all have our own ways of dealing with things," Klotz said. "It's like someone took my heart and broke it. So some people may think it's extreme for losing a cat, but I love them and I don't want to exclude the possibility of ever finding them."
Aaron Vannoy, Animal Services Manager at the shelter, said he gets dozens of strays turned into the shelter each week, and unfortunately Klotz's story is a common one.
He said that if you do lose a pet, it's important not to hesitate: begin the search right away. He also said to go to the Abilene Animal Shelter to turn in information on the pet, along with a current picture. If the pet is micro-chipped, contact the micro-chip company and your veterinarian. Post flyers around the area the animal was lost.
"Normally, people that find their animals do so within the first week," said Vannoy. "The longer it is those odds start going down. But, we have seen happy stories."
Klotz hopes for her own happy story.
"If anybody sees a gray tabby cat, i would be so grateful if they would let me know," said Klotz through tears, "and I'm gonna keep wishing that she's just gonna surface because she means the world to me."
Klotz is offering a $500 reward for the safe return of Terra and $250 for Luna.
If you have seen either of the cats pictured, call Jody Klotz at 325-670-9880.
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