Toby looking relaxed after a day of stealing stranger's shoes.
Toby looking relaxed after a day of stealing stranger's shoes.

Cat’s footwear fetish sparks hunt for shoe owners

IT all started with a neighbour's thong for Toby, the chocolate Burmese.

Ferny Grove cat owner Anne was putting on a load of washing when Toby (named after the chocolate bar Toblerone) left his first catch in the middle of the lounge.

"I was walking down the stairs and thought 'what's that?'," she said.

 

Toby looking nothing like Ferny Grove’s most wanted with his brother Jaffa.
Toby looking nothing like Ferny Grove’s most wanted with his brother Jaffa.

"Then the phone rang and my neighbour asked if I'd seen her thong. And I said 'yes, it's on my loungeroom floor'."

On another occasion, a friend popped over to see Anne, and Toby made a beeline for her feet.

"He walked in and tried to remove the thong from her foot," she said.

"Then he bought in a man's thong, and while I was yelling at him and ringing around the neighbours to find out whose it was - he went back and got the other one."

Toby's organised enough to steal pairs too.
Toby's organised enough to steal pairs too.

Now that the tally's up to 16 shoes (including some pairs), Anne put the lost footwear online in the hope their owners might recognise them.

"I've managed to repatriate four of them," she said.

Thongs are Toby's shoe of choice, although he's also quite partial to Crocs and a ladies slip-on.

"There are a pair of court shoes that are my size but not my style," Anne said.

The Target thong Toby bought home on the weekend.
The Target thong Toby bought home on the weekend.

"Then on Saturday, he bought in a single glittery green thong from Target. Size 5."

Toby is locked in at night, but is allowed outside during the day, although Anne isn't sure where he's sourcing his footwear from.

She suspects people living around Leckmy, Kirikee, and Cabragh St might own the footwear he's sourced.

"I've got a cat flap and if he's got the position right, he can get them inside," she said.

"He struggles to get it through and when he does, he places it on the floor and he looks at me. He looks so proud of himself."

Recognise any of these shoes? Contact jasmin.lill@news.com.au if you'd like to be reunited with your footwear.

Thongs and Crocs are prime targets when Toby's on the hunt.
Thongs and Crocs are prime targets when Toby's on the hunt.
Some of Toby's booty that have been dragged through the cat flap.
Some of Toby's booty that have been dragged through the cat flap.

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