After being forgotten in the port of Genoa for two weeks, a cat was reunited with her owner in Tuscany with the help of veterinarians and the Livorno local police.
Mila was at the ferry terminal in Genoa with her human. However, with the bustling atmosphere at the ferry dock, the kitten got separated from her owner.
Mila meowed loudly to be heard, but it didn’t work. The ferry’s door then closed, and the ship sailed away, leaving the pet confined within her carrier in Genoa’s harbor.
Still, all hope wasn’t lost as the port staff discovered the lonesome kitten. On October 8, someone rang the Genoa Yellow Cross Animal Rescue about an abandoned cat at the Ferry Terminal.
A volunteer went to pick Mila up and bring her to the Monte Contessa municipal kennel, where he asked the veterinarian to scan for a microchip. The device they found under the cat’s skin provided her name (Mila), age (eight), and location (Livorno) of her owner.
At that point, Dr. Paolo Allasio and his associates started looking for Mila’s owner. The first question was whether or not the man had boarded the departing ferry or had been ill.
Due to the lack of a centralized database, veterinarians looked for the animal’s perfect match in each region. There was a phone number in the master file, but the individual listed lived abroad and wasn’t picking up the phone.
As a result, the veterinarian turned to the Livorno police. Paolo Allasio told Kodami:
“The officers were very cooperative by taking this non-human but feline case to heart; they went to his home in Tuscany precisely and, by asking neighbors, managed to contact him. “
Mila’s owner was incredulous when the police reached him; he plans to travel to Genoa soon to pick up Mila.
A tricky legal environment fro cats
Though the example of Mila demonstrates the value of micro-chipping for felines, there is currently no nationwide requirement to microchip cats like there is for dogs, and only a small number of localities have implemented the practice.
According to Dr. Allasio, in Liguria, it is required to microchip only when the cat is given away. However, a cat does not need to be registered if it lives with its owner its whole life.
Sadly, the national data registration system isn’t helpful if the cat gets lost or stolen. This is compounded by the fact that local registries are not yet standardized.
Even though the Ministry of Health had previously pledged the construction of a portal so that all regional registers would interact, the information still does not flow from the regions into a national database to this day.