Up until recently, most people have never heard of Quilty. The cat led a sorry life that landed him in a shelter. But Quilty didn’t sit in the corner and feel sorry for himself. Oh no. This creative kitty set out to free his friends – every single night.
The feline bided his time until staff at the Friends For Life Animal Rescue and Adoption Organization locked up for the night. Then, once everything was quiet, Quilty did his thing. Giving new meaning to the name “cat burglar,” he somehow managed to free all the inmates from the cat rooms. There came a point when the nocturnal bids for freedom were not enough. Quilty also started freeing them during the day. Then, several times a day. The staff decided to put a stop to the energetic lock-picking pet. While they adored Quilty, it wasn’t fun to catch a bunch of cats every morning and worse, when he sprung them during working hours.
The accused was gently escorted to the lobby, where he was detained for his crimes. While he was being kept separate, the other cats mournfully watched while the cattery was being “Quilty-proofed.” After a short banishment, Quilty was returned to his friends. The repairs ended the streak, which was so entertaining that the shelter released the story to the media. The public responded with a #FreeQuilty campaign, which was not a slur against the Houston rescue center but a call to find him a forever home.
Quilty’s escapades went viral. He opened his own Instagram account. Riding on the opportunity to promote him, the staff held a press conference and soon enough, the adoption offers started to arrive. It wasn’t just one or two applications, either. The sheer amount of requests was practically a paper avalanche. Despite the overwhelming response, the staff managed to choose a foster family between all the hopefuls.
True to Quilty’s growing fame, the farewell he received was anything but mundane. The lively event had a tongue-in-cheek theme called “Come Bid the Spicy A-Hole Good Luck.” As the event drew to a close, Quilty went off with his foster family. We’re all keeping our fingers crossed that the trial run will be successful. Should Quilty click with his new humans and settle in, his adoption would become permanent.
The story had wider repercussions than merely that of a single cat catching the eye of social media. Quilty’s antics also provided valuable exposure for the Houston shelter and showcased the affection and care the animals received. The whole thing highlighted the fact that adult felines have humor, intelligence and their own unique personalities. Following the success of Quilty’s story, the sanctuary invited the public to have a look at the other cats. After all, they no longer had a nimble freedom fighter to release them from the cattery.