Jan. 8 (UPI) -- A cat that escaped from her owner at a security checkpoint in New York's LaGuardia Airport was returned to the distraught traveler after spending 11 days hiding in the hub's ceiling.
Taylor Le said she was in the process of moving from New York to Orange County, Calif., when she booked a Christmas Eve flight for herself and her 6-year-old cat, Muji.
Le said TSA agents had her remove Muji from her carrier at the security checkpoint, despite her protestations that the feline was likely to flee. Le said Muji panicked, as she had predicted, and led her owner and airport staff on a chase that ended when the cat climbed a series of platforms to a ceiling enclosure and disappeared inside.
The Queens Lost & Found Pets group received word of Muji's plight from Le's Facebook post, and pet-flying advocacy group Where Is Jack? Inc. became involved and helped Le arrange for a tracking dog to visit the airport.
The dog, a golden retriever named Abby, indicated Muji was still in the ceiling, and Le caught a flight back to New York.
She attempted to lure the cat out of the ceiling, but Muji didn't emerge. Finally, 11 days after the cat had fled from security, Le received word that she had emerged and been safely caught in a trap.
Le said Muji was taken to an animal hospital in Long Island, and she was reunited with her pet. The duo are scheduled to fly to California on Saturday.
"This time, I have a TSA harness for her, and I'm going to insist on having a private screening," Le told the New York Post.