Remember the New York nanny who “stole” the senior cat last month to save it from being euthanized? Well now that poor cat is back home with his “owners”, Russell and Julie Berman. Yes, take a minute to vent, yell and fume. And brace yourself, because nothing about this case outside of the nanny’s love, seems to be in the interest of the cat Tigger.
After quitting her nanny job to save Tigger from an undeserved death, 33-year-old Rebecca Katz seems to be the only one looking out for him.
Katz had been caring for the family’s two children, ages 4 and 6, since they were just babies. But when she left the home on July 2nd, it was with Tigger tucked safely in her arms. It was also the day BEFORE he was scheduled to be euthanized because he threw up on their “good couch”. She left them a long note and explained why she’d made her decision to do what she did.
“I left a note on their kitchen counter basically saying, ‘I’m sorry I can’t let you do this. Let me give you the break you deserve,’” Katz said.
She then received a text from Mrs. that said:
You had no right to take him, bring him back or I’m calling the police.
Katz replied in an email she’d panicked when learning he was to be put down the next day. She apologized and admitted what she’d done was wrong. But she says she heard nothing back from the family.
It took about a week for the situation to escalate further before Katz turned herself into the police on July 8th.
“I am willing to go to jail and sleep with cockroaches over this, because this animal has a right to life,” nanny-turned-cat burglar Rebecca Katz told The Post. “Aging pets have rights, too,’’ she said. “They put their cat on the curb … and I picked up the garbage.”
Although the majority of the world was rooting for the heroic nanny, some heartless souls felt the cat was just “stolen property”.
However, Katz had apparently been asking the family for YEARS to let her take and care for the sweet senior cat.
That makes me question two things though:
- This wasn’t a spur-of-the-moment decision, so can that be considered pre-meditation? (Pre-“meow”ditation? =) Sorry, too soon?)
- In all seriousness, that means she likely started asking after hearing them talk about “the needle” and wanting to put him down. Which explains why the young children repeated what they’d heard their parents say…for years! Katz told the NYPost: “For a few years, I’ve been crying because I didn’t know that the cat would be there the next day.”
Katz has mentioned on Facebook that she’s been in touch with some famous cat advocates though because of the story. It was picked up by Howard and Beth Stern, two amazing supporters in the feline world. Howard mentioned it on his radio show and Katz states she’s spoken to Beth, receiving much help and positivity.
Rebecca’s best friend even set up a GoFundMe for Tigger’s vet bills–and now anything donated can be used for Katz’s court costs. She wouldn’t have been able to help Tigger as much as she could without that support and is extremely grateful.
Fortunately, the courts held off on making any rash decisions about Tigger’s well being at that time.
Katz has veterinary documents that show she has already spent hundreds of dollars on check-ups and treatment for Tigger. The paperwork, however, still shows “inconclusive” results relating to Tigger’s quality of life.
The Berman’s originally offered to reimburse her for Tigger’s bills if she returned him to them. But she doesn’t trust them and had still refused.
In court on July 6, his original family demanded that the senior cat be returned to their care. But despite their pleas, Nassau County Judge Rhonda Fischer denied their request. She decided she needs an official report on the cat’s current health before the matter can be settled.
Both Katz and the family are due back in court on August 14 when the judge will hopefully make a final decision about Tigger’s future.
In the meantime, Tigger remains with Katz during her conditional probationary period. She’s determined to keep him safe as she fights for his right to live out his senior years.
What none of us could have expected, was that there were some motivated individuals who may not have agreed with the nanny’s decision–or the courts.
It’s all just speculation, but when the police showed up at her Oceanside, New York home on Monday this week–they didn’t seem like cat lovers.
The NYPost spoke to a devastated Katz after the incident transpired.
Police showed up with an unrelated outstanding bench warrant for her husband — and then used the opportunity to take the kitty, she said. “My husband was home and they pushed their way in,” Katz recounted.
Her lawyer claimed the retrieval was an “abuse of process.”
“For them to go to this length to threaten someone with arrest on an unrelated matter to convince them to turn over the cat is just wrong, plain and simple,” attorney Carolyn Sanchez said.
And then the police did something worrisome. They returned Tigger to his original “family”.
Spokesmen for the police department claim they know nothing about the incident. And although we know Tigger is no longer with nanny Katz, Mrs. Berman refuses to give up his current location.
“I’m afraid they may kill Tigger,” nanny-turned-cat burglar Rebecca Katz said between sobs Tuesday.
On the only positive note here, Mrs. Berman agrees that what the police did may be questionable.
“I hear you. It’s crazy.”
So apparently she’s not completely inhuman…just when it comes to her cat. The Bermans have not spoken as to whether they are still looking into euthanizing Tigger. Hopefully they can see how important he is to Katz and do the right thing.
Let her have him! Let her take care of him and pay his medical bills. Save your money by NOT euthanizing him!
You’re going to need it to hire another nanny.
REMEMBER: SPAY/NEUTER, FOSTER, VOLUNTEER, TNR & AS ALWAYS, ADOPT, DON’T SHOP!
Related Story: Nanny Steals Aging Cat to Save Him From “The Needle”Related Story: How to Make Sure Your Senior Cat Is Comfortable
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