On September 2018, Pip, the Beach Cat showed up at the doorstep of a kind human in Berlin, Maryland. The thunderstorm scared him. So, he went in search to find a safe place to call home.
And, that’s how frightened Pip found his granny, who was house-sitting for her family. He got some food and warmth until the family arrived. Unfortunately, the family couldn’t take him after granny moved.
Pip lost all his hope to find a home. He was sure that he would end up on the road again.
But Laura Meadows, a high school girl found Pip and took him under her shadow. But, as Laura was too small, her parents couldn’t keep him in.
Laura’s elder sister and her husband, however, loved Pip, so they offered to take him for a while.
Emily Meadows told The Dodo:
“My sister begged me to take him, and we were watching him, assuming we would take him to the humane society.
But then the humane society was full, and we had to keep him, so that’s how it all started.”
Not long after, Emily found this sick looking tiny Pip was a special cat with unique features. But her number one task was to get him back on feet.
The cat was tired with swollen eyes, which forbade him to see. He was very-very dirty. He never looked at the family or responded to any gestures.
They even thought he was deaf until their visit to the vet who cleaned his ears.
Once a sick looking cat is quite, an energetic trouble maker now. Once he got healthy, he spent his days climbing up the window, scattering food all over the floor, knocking down water glasses. He did everything else except sitting quietly.
He particularly loved terrorizing his new siblings, Natty and Mowgli. He loved hopping on their head and dance.
The owner chuckles:
“It was Pip’s world. We were just living in it.”
Pip’s favorite litter box was the house plants. With everything going on, his parents decided to take Pip on a surprising adventure.
“The house needed a break,” Meadows said. “Natty and Mowgli definitely needed a break. And that’s when the idea came to us: Why not take Pip outside for a walk?”
The Meadows family lived in Ocean City, Maryland, so finding a beach was a piece of cake. They put Pip on a leash and trailed to the sea. To their surprise, Pip loved it.
He quickly showed his skill of digging in the sand, chased around seagulls feathers, played like a little child with his newly found toys. Once he got tired, he layed near his parents under the sun. Now, he is a companion of their beachful journey.
They slowly started giving him some personal space. He spent his “me time” on the beach near the water. He loved exploring the water.
Meadow kept him on a Boogie Board one day, and he was fascinated by the water.
“He caught a little wave and stayed on the board. When the board hit the shore, he hopped off and just walked along the beach like everything was normal. That’s when we knew that Pip was a very special cat.”
It turns out; he loves swimming as well.
Pip’s skill gathered a lot of fans. “After several trips to the beach, Pip was getting videoed and photographed by [tourists] and residents,” Meadows said. Even local stations were fascinated by Pip, they called Meadows for a story.
Unfortunately, Ocean City laws restrict pets on the beach at the peak season. So, he had to hide from the authority. He used to cover himself in the sand if they walked past by him.
Slowly Pip started going out more. Not just on the beach but the boardwalk nearby…
Pet-friendly restaurants and bars…
to special events…
“There was a huge outpouring of support from the local community when Pip wasn’t going to be allowed at certain fundraisers/events, so we had lots of businesses welcome Pip with open arms and say he is allowed on their ‘private properties’ on the boardwalk anytime he wants.”
The parents found some pet-friendly beaches nearby where he continued his adventure respecting the law. During off-seasons, he loves paddle boarding.
He stays cozy in his owner’s backpack on the bike rides.
He loves.. halloweeen..
He even explored out of his home town. He went places like Savannah, Georgia, and New York City.
Pip keeps up with some social works as well…
Attends some class with kids.
Pip published a book describing his adventure…
“When someone filmed [Pip] on the beach and sent it to the news, that’s when we thought, ‘Well, it’s great to have a famous cat, but I would like to do some good for the community,'” Meadows said. “That’s how The Little Pip Project was born, as well as Pip’s weekly volunteer and outreach to various organizations like nursing homes, developmental centers, and schools.”
He made his stuff toys so he could be with everybody. “We give a Little Pip stuffed animal to someone in need for everyone that is bought,” Meadows said. Little Pups is more famous in the nursing houses where they cannot have their cats due to living circumstance.
Fans started sending Pip letters and emails from all around the world. Many thank him for helping them on their hard times. One of them was a couple who recently had a car accident.
“Pip’s little adventures helped us a lot to take our minds off the horrific things happening around us.”
Pip not just help his followers but his parents as well. His mom had a childhood trauma, which leads to hospitals, nursing homes, blood, and IVs related phobia.
“I never in a million years thought that I would overcome this phobia.”
“Having Pip with me [while volunteering in those places] helped, and now I can take a step back and see how seriously helpful animals are when it comes to emotional support. At the end of the day, Pip has changed my life and helped me emotionally as much as he has changed everyone else’s — I’ve never felt more stable from a mental health perspective than I have since working with Pip on a daily basis and having him go with me everywhere,” Meadows added.
Recently Pip’s parents began to foster kittens through Town Cats of Ocean City. And we all know their source of entertainment.
“He just wanted to try new things, and that helped him calm down a lot at home,” Meadows said. “[He likes] learning too — clicker training also really helped.”
He loves some pampers in the little downtime he gets.
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