It’s still not clear how the crafty kitty made its way unnoticed into the suitcase, but the Transportation Security Administration spotted the orange stowaway before it wound up stashed in the belly of an aircraft.
The TSA said this week a Florida-bound traveller unknowingly packed a cat into their baggage, but eagle-eyed agents at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport found the furry feline when the checked bag went through security.
“This is how @TSA at @JFKairport spotted the cat in the checked bag,” tweeted TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein. “The X-ray machine is this cat’s new best friend!”
Farbstein said the officer was “shocked” to find the live animal inside the checked bag.
But there was an explanation — and don’t worry, the kitty is tip-top.
“Traveler said the cat belonged to someone else in his household,” she added. “On the bright side, the cat’s out of the bag and safely back home.”
While some doubted the accidental nature of this packing job, cat owners everywhere know their four-legged friends are prone to climbing into open bags and luggage.
It's very possible. I packed a suitcase for a 3 week Norway trip. Got the bag packed, locked, loaded and on the way to the airport, and it started meowing at me. Cat had crawled in and burrowed under my sweaters and I didn't have a clue. I have no idea how she even fit in there!— Meka Jamesa Larimer (@VoldeMeka) November 23, 2022
Tell me you don't have cats without telling me you don't have cats.— zanzaboonda | Âû Ⓥ 🏳️🌈 (she/her/any) クリステン (@zanzaboonda) November 23, 2022
Every time I get my suitcases out to pack for a trip, my cats have to be there, be inside to check out what I'm packing. Like to sleep there, burrow under items. So yes, this is likely accidental.— voyager619sd (@SoCalGuy22) November 24, 2022
My cat is an 18-pound behemoth and I still have come close to accidentally packing her in my luggage because she climbs into the suitcase when I’m not looking— caroline mccarthy (@caro) November 24, 2022
I am surprised this does not happen more often. My cats love to curl up in my suitcases when I am packing. I can see how if you were packing in a hurry you might miss one.— Edward Nye (@EdNyeAlaskaGuy) November 23, 2022
My sister and I were going on a road trip. I picked her up and loaded her stuff into the car. 100 miles into the trip, Kevin (her cat who was supposed to be at home with her bf) poked his head out of her travel bag, yawned, and looked at us as if to say "Are we there yet?"😂— Wingo Lamo (@Wingo_Lamo) November 24, 2022
The TSA had a lot of fun with the unusual find.
The puns on its social media post were purr-fect.
“We’re letting the cat out of the bag on a hiss-toric find,” the TSA wrote. “This CATch had our baggage screening officers @JFKairport saying, ‘Come on meow’! Feline like you have travel questions reach out to our furiends @AskTSA.”