Cambridge cat quite the explorer

Shay Bootten and Oshaa, the kitten with the wandering eye.

A local cat is making a name for himself around Cambridge, exploring his way to the middle school, the vets and even the other side of town.

Oshaa, a 6-month-old tabby owned by Shay Bootten, has become somewhat of an adventurer after moving from Carlyle St to Queen St three months ago. He’s crossed the bridge and wandered to his old home, dropped in at the Cambridge Vets a few times, as well as In Stone Café, Onyx, Stables, Te Koo Utu Lake, St Andrews Church and his favourite spot, Cambridge Middle School.

He is also a regular feature on the Cambridge Grapevine Facebook page, with concerned locals seeking his owner after he’s walked into their houses and made himself right at home.

The roaming tabby’s morning routine sees him pop outside to watch the middle school students on the way to school, and sometimes he likes to follow them there, even walking into one of the classrooms to join in on the lesson. “He loves all the kids,” said Shay.

Another time, Shay was at a pub in town during the early hours of the morning, and in walked her cat. “I was like, ‘is that my cat!?’ and he was at the pub! Like mother like son,” she laughed.

“I’ve never had a cat that has been so outgoing, he’s almost like a dog… Some people were saying he’s kind of like me, he’s a social butterfly. I’ve met so many cool new people having this cat.”

Shay has had Oshaa since late November last year, he was found as a stray kitten on a mutual friend’s farm, where the resident dogs had killed his brother.

“They wanted to keep him, but they had to get rid of him because their dogs wanted to eat him… I was carrying him out to the car and these dogs were like trying to jump up and I’m like ‘oh my God I’m taking this little guy out of here’. I think that’s why he’s not scared of anything.”

Shay hopes locals will refrain from feeding him, as he gets plenty at home. “He is microchipped and I will try putting a collar on him again but he always rips it off… It would help if the kids didn’t call him to school.

“I love him very much and I love his outgoing personality, but I also love that he comes home for cuddles every night.”

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