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Dolly, the cat that ran away to sea: Isle of Wight pet stows away on luxury yacht for trip to mainland

By Tammy Hughes (Mail Online)    14:34, January 11, 2016

As many owners know to their cost, most cats can’t abide water.

But Dolly the rescue cat just can’t get enough of the stuff.

In fact, she seems to be carving out something of a career as a seafarer, if her latest exploit is anything to go by.

The black-and-white pet has just been reunited with her owners five weeks after she secretly journeyed from the Isle of Wight to Poole in Dorset aboard a luxury motor cruiser.

The distance is some 30 miles as the crow flies – or as the cat floats.

A taste for the high life: Dolly the Cat may have been looking for a winter break when she boarded the luxury cruiser.

The family which owns the boat had been enjoying a trip out when they were surprised to find a stowaway hiding in one of the cabins.

After a number of weeks caring for the apparently stray pet at their home, the kind-hearted family took her to a vet and she was identified through a microchip embedded under her skin.

Delighted owner Debs Murphy-Latham received a call on Saturday to say that her much-loved rescue cat had been found having made her way to the mainland.

She said: ‘Dolly has gone missing before but she always stayed on the island.

'I would never have expected that she’d make it all the way to Poole.

‘I think she has developed a taste for the high life. It’s not the first time she’s tried to board a yacht.’ 

Dolly's delighted family Debs Murphy-Latham, 44, with her children Natasha (left), 10 and Annabelle, 7, received a phone call from the owner of the boat, informing them they had found the stowaway cat.

Miss Murphy-Latham, who owns a holiday letting company called VIP Cottages, added: ‘We had been keeping her inside after she got on to a yacht in November but she sneaked out while the children were getting ready for school a couple of weeks later and we hadn’t seen her since.

‘She was run over in March and we thought we were going to lose her but she pulled through.

‘We were all very upset when she went missing. We just didn’t know what had happened.’

The owners of the luxury yacht drove to Southampton with Dolly yesterday to reunite the family with their beloved pet.

Miss Murphy-Latham and her daughters Natasha, ten, and seven-year-old Annabelle crossed the Solent in a high-speed ferry from Cowes to collect their errant pet.

Which was good news from Dolly’s point of view because it meant that she got to enjoy another ride on the water on her way home.

‘My daughters will have to peel themselves off the ceiling, they are so excited to have her back,’ said Miss Murphy-Latham.

She described Dolly, who the family obtained from the Cats Protection League in Ryde, as ‘such a fantastic little character’.

But she added: ‘I’d quite like her to stay put this time so she might be spending a few weeks indoors just until she remembers where she lives.

‘Fortunately because she was microchipped the people who found her were able to take her to their vets and get her scanned and they were then able to contact me.’

Puss in boats: Dolly took to the high seas, following this route from the Isle of Wight to Poole in Dorset.

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(Editor:Kong Defang,Bianji)

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