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Published November 05, 2013, 08:05 PM

East Grand Forks woman offers $700 reward for missing cat

In the past month or so, Beth Greenwood figures she has searched every inch of East Grand Forks’ south end where she lives. She posted 500 fliers all over towns. She posted on Facebook. She bought classified ads.

By: Tu-Uyen Tran, Grand Forks Herald

In the past month or so, Beth Greenwood figures she has searched every inch of East Grand Forks’ south end where she lives.

She posted 500 fliers all over towns. She posted on Facebook. She bought classified ads. She went door to door. She paid a company to make 500 calls to residents and animal shelters around the area. And she is offering a $700 reward.

Her cat Milo is missing.

“I’ve done everything I can think of,” said Greenwood.

Her devotion has gotten a bit of “flack” from friends and even her husband, Jamie, believes that hope is gone, she said, but she doesn’t care because Milo is family.

“We got Milo at a shelter and we got him at a time when I was probably at my lowest. I’d lost my mom, who was my best friend. Four months later, I lost my golden retriever who was 14 years old,” Greenwood said. “The thing is he’s the first thing that made me feel good again. I know it’s silly, he’s just an animal, but he made me smile.”

So the search for Milo continues.

Playful friend

Milo is a short-haired cat with green eyes, a mostly gray back, white belly and legs.

He’s small for an adult cat, probably because he was a sickly kitten, Greenwood said.

When he was adopted about two and a half years ago, he was the only kitten in the shelter with a sign indicating he had a medical condition, she said.

He had a serious digestive problem and it took months before the family found the right kind of cat food to get it under control, she said.

Then he had ear problems and eye problems — his eyelid was scratching his cornea — and it took many visits to different vets before the problem was discovered and fixed, she said.

Milo grew up to be a playful, loving cat that wouldn’t ever claw anyone, she said, and everyone who knew him loved him.

“I play tag with him,” she said. “He’d come and grab my leg with his paws, and then I’d wrestle him and he’d be purring. And I would be late for work because I just couldn’t get away from him.”

Rescuers

Milo is part of a long line of animals that Greenwood grew up with, several of them abused and mistreated when they were found. “Mom had a heart of gold,” she said.

One dog, Ole, was found with a batch of puppies that had been buried down by the Red River. Her brother walked by with a friend and saw some dirt moving. The family nursed Ole, the lone survivor, back to health, feeding him with an eyedropper.

Another dog, Freckles, had been abused by a man, Greenwood suspects, because he would go into a ball and whimper every time a man came toward him.

Her other cat, Maddi, came from dire circumstances, too. Maddi’s mother was found pregnant, declawed and unable to hunt for food at the family lake cabin.

“It seems animals that weren’t so lucky found their home at our house,” Greenwood said. “Maybe that’s why I am how I am.”

Not giving up

Milo disappeared from her life on Sept. 20. She came home that evening and learned that he, normally an indoor cat, had escaped by accident, she said. She called to him for hours until 11:30 p.m., but he didn’t return as he normally would, she said. At 5 a.m., she woke up and called to him again, she said. “I kept calling.”

In her classified ad, she asks people in the south end to check their garages and sheds.

That’s not where Milo would normally be, she said, but if he could come home he would already, so she fears that he might have hidden somewhere and got locked in.

He’ll answer to his name, but maybe not to everyone, she said. Maybe he’ll answer to the sound a shaken bag of treats would make, she said.

When her golden retriever, Sam, died, she said she knew it was his time to go, and she’d done all she could. But it’s agonizing to not know if Milo has died or if he’s suffering, she said.

“If you truly love an animal you can’t just walk away,” she said. “Well, I can’t walk away.”

Have you seen this cat?

Name: Milo.

Age: About 2½ years.

Description: Green eyes, white belly and legs, gray back and tail. The size of an older kitten, but is an adult cat.

Last seen: Sept. 20 in the south end of East Grand Forks.

Contact: Beth Greenwood, (218) 230-4518.

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