It’s been long debated whether black cats are a portent of good luck or bad – but for one moggy the luck has all been bad after he set off a series of unfortunate events.
Buttons, a three-year-old cat, who lives with his owner Rosemary Smeaton-Brown, her children George, 15, and Amber, 13, is at large after an as yet unexplained injury set off a chain reaction which led to him running for the hills.
The cat turned up at the family home in Livingston with a nasty leg injury which, it is believed, was caused by a fight with another animal. His owners arranged for an appointment with a PDSA vet, but while they were en route to get Buttons checked out the family was involved in a three-car crash.
During the commotion that followed, Buttons escaped from his holdall and disappeared.
Mrs Smeaton-Brown, 38, who works as a sales assistant, said: “My children called me at work on Friday afternoon to say that Buttons had come home with a very nasty injury on his leg.
“I managed to arrange an emergency appointment with the PDSA and rushed home to pick him and Amber up.” However, as the trio attempted to change lanes on the A71 just before the Sighthill roundabout, their car was involved in a three-car smash. It was quite scary but my daughter and I weren’t hurt. We got the car to the side of the road and I called the police. Buttons was obviously quite distressed, so I went to get his carrier out so we could try to calm him down.
“Unbeknownst to me, the impact had snapped one of the clips on his carrier. As I was lifting him out of the car the bottom fell out and Buttons fell on to the road.”
The terrified animal then decided to make a break for it.
“He just ran off into the bushes and we couldn’t find him,” said Mrs Smeaton-Brown. “It’s been a nightmare. My kids are devastated.”
The family launched a social media campaign to find Buttons, and the Facebook community has rallied round.
“My original post has been shared by hundreds of people,” Mrs Smeaton-Brown said. “He’s been microchipped so if he had been handed in somewhere already they would have been in touch.”
They hope that Buttons – who is certainly due some good fortune – will soon be reunited with them.
“I don’t care about the car, it’s just a thing. But the thought of him out there on his own and with an injured leg too, it’s really just heartbreaking.”
• If you’ve found Buttons, call the newsdesk on 0131-620 8733.
FROM BÊTE NOIRE ALL AT SEA TO SYMBOL OF GOOD FORTUNE
Black cats have been much maligned throughout history. In the Middle Ages, they were thought to be connected with witchcraft.
However, more recently, they have been seen as a symbol of good luck in the UK – though many still believe it is bad luck to have one cross your path.
Black cats are considered good luck in Japan, and also by sailors. But if a black cat walks on to a docked ship and walks off again, this is thought to mean the ship will sink.