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Cat reunites with family after spending 100 days in Maui wildfire zone

Mahina's family moved to Montana and lost hope of finding her — but then they heard from the Maui Humane Society.
Cat reunites with family after spending 100 days in Maui wildfire zone
Posted at 8:47 PM, Feb 23, 2024

Thousands of people were forced to flee the Hawaiian island of Maui last year as devastating wildfires overtook the tropical environment. As the damage spread, residents and visitors had to leave their homes behind, and as they became displaced, so did their pets, many of whom became separated from their owners amid the chaos.

But like the people whose bravery and persistence kept them pushing through the tragedy, the affected animals were shown to be resilient, too. And for one courageous cat named Mahina, the shared attitude led to a happy reunion.

Three-year-old Mahina became separated from her family when the fires ravaged their home and forced the owners to relocate to Hawaii's mainland, where they immediately filed a lost pet report. However, they had no luck in finding their furry friend, and after moving thousands of miles away to Montana, they lost hope of ever reuniting with her.

Then, the Maui Humane Society found her.

The group said Mahina had survived 100 days in the burn zone when its Fire Task Force finally saw and safely trapped her. Crews quickly identified the cat's owner through her microchip, and "needless to say, they were overjoyed to learn that Mahina was a survivor," the group wrote in a Facebook post.

The next step was getting Mahina to her Ohana — a task, it said, that "took a village." 

"MHS covered the cost of Mahina's health certificate and travel, Hawaiian Airlines and Alaska Airlines made sure she was safe and sound in her flight and a trusted transporter brought her from Seattle to Montana," MHS wrote on Facebook.

Now the once-lost cat is enjoying life again with her family, though she's still getting used to her new state's weather.

"Mahina is doing soooo so good," Mahina's family said in an update to MHS. "She is a happy kitty and loves to play with her feather toy and watch TV with us. She stays strictly inside now, but since we are in Montana, she hasn't wanted to go outside because of the snow! She's so goofy and is so happy to be home with her parents!"

MHS says it's taken in nearly 800 animals since the deadly fires took hold of the region, and weeks ago, it said it was still caring for 600 of them. Still, every day its Fire Task Force is rescuing more animals from the burn zone, all with the hope of bringing them back to health and leading them back to their families.

Earlier this month, MHS opened its Lahaina Pet Resource Center. It plans to use the around $20 million it still has in donations to continue funding veterinary care and reunification efforts for these pets.

SEE MORE: Hawaii identifies last of the 100 known victims of Lahaina wildfire

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