A bodega cat in New York City has been reunited with its owners – a week after he was allegedly snatched outside the deli’s doors.
Boka the cat was lounging outside Green Olives Deli & Grill in Brooklyn on July 29 when an alleged thief scooped him up and took off.
Surveillance video showed a man wearing a blue hat and a white shirt pick Boka up and walk away.
The heart-broken bodega owners then began a social media campaign to get Boka back.
Abdulmajeed Albahri, one of the three owners of the Park Slope bodega, told the New York Post that someone had come into his store with information about the cats whereabouts last Friday.
“He told me he was trying to convince the guy to return the cat,” Albahri said. “I told him it’s OK for now. I just need my cat back.”
When Albhari arrived at the bodega at 5 a.m. on Saturday morning, he was greeted with Boka sitting outside. Albhari says he spent the next hour playing with the feline and giving him treats before opening up the deli at 6 a.m.
The bodega’s owners gushed about Boka’s return on Instagram.
“Great news to everyone. BOKA IS BACK,” an Instagram caption by @kediboka reads with a picture of the green-eyed cat.
Instead of seeking justice, the deli owners said they are simply happy that Boka is back and are not focused on finding the alleged thief.
Bodega cats are a unique facet of New York City life. These working felines – some of them stray cats – are usually deployed to protect delis from mouse infestations.
While the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene condemns the use of the bodega cats, deli owners and customers alike are steadfast in their adoration of them.