Police Officer Rescues and Adopts Kitten That Was Thrown From Vehicle

Officer Timothy Rugg of the Harrisonburg Police Department in Virginia found himself in an unexpected situation that would change not just one life, but two.

This remarkable story began when Rugg responded to a service call, only to discover a four-week-old kitten thrown from a vehicle, a victim of unthinkable cruelty.

What followed is a heartening account of rescue, recovery, and an unlikely bond formed in the face of adversity.

Officer Timothy Rugg works for the Harrisonburg Police Department in Virginia.

Photo: Facebook / Harrisonburg Police Department
Officer Timothy Rugg works for the Harrisonburg Police Department in Virginia.

From Tragedy to Triumph: The Kitten’s Journey

The kitten, initially named Charlie but later christened Penny-Furthing, was found terrified and hiding under a couch.

Rugg, recalling the incident, told WVVA how the kitten clambered onto his shoulder, purring and refusing to let go, a moment of instant connection that would shape their future together.

Initially brought to the Rockingham Harrisonburg SPCA, Penny faced another hurdle: the shelter was at full capacity. This predicament, however, led to a decision that would turn a ‘failed foster’ into a successful adoption.

Rugg responded to a call involving a kitten thrown from a vehicle.

Photo: Pexels
Rugg responded to a call involving a kitten thrown from a vehicle.

“I just felt like she wanted to be with me, and before that, I never saw myself owning a cat. I thought I was a dog person, but we just kind of bonded immediately, and I just knew I had to take her with me,” Rugg said.

Penny’s initial timidity has since transformed into a lively, playful nature, bringing joy and relaxation into Rugg’s life. It wasn’t just a rescue mission; it was the beginning of a unique partnership.

“It’s heartbreaking to think that someone chose to toss little Penny out of a car. Fortunately for her Ofc. Rugg was there to bring her to us,” Huck Nawaz, executive director of the RHSPCA, told Good Morning America. “I guess they bonded on the ride over as she was already quite attached to him by the time they got here and he offered to foster her while she recovers. This is one case of a ‘failed foster’ that we couldn’t be happier about. We’re very grateful for the support of our community members like Ofc. Rugg who open their hearts and homes for our animals in need.”

Officer Rugg found the kitten, later named Penny-Furthing, hiding under a couch.

Photo: Facebook / Harrisonburg Police Department
Officer Rugg found the kitten, later named Penny-Furthing, hiding under a couch.

The Adoption Process and Its Significance

The process of adopting Penny wasn’t just a formality for Rugg. It symbolized a commitment to care and a pledge to provide a loving home for a creature that had experienced undue distress. As ABC News reports, Rugg now advocates for others to consider adoption. His actions serve as a beacon of hope and a reminder of the profound impact one individual can have in addressing animal welfare issues.

Fostering, Adoption, and Animal Welfare

This story extends beyond the bond between an officer and a kitten. It highlights the broader issues of animal cruelty, the challenges faced by shelters, and the importance of fostering and adoption. Officer Rugg’s experience with Penny underscores the difference that compassion and action can make. It’s a call to action for communities to support animal welfare initiatives and consider the role each person can play in saving and enriching lives.

Today we celebrate Penny-Furthing’s rescue as a narrative of hope, healing, and the incredible bond between humans and animals. It serves as a poignant reminder of the difference one act of kindness can make, not just in the life of an animal but in the heart of a community.

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Matthew Russell is a West Michigan native and with a background in journalism, data analysis, cartography and design thinking. He likes to learn new things and solve old problems whenever possible, and enjoys bicycling, spending time with his daughters, and coffee.
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