You may have seen the other week, a photo the Enterprise ran of a little girl with her cat. Autumn Bosin was driving around in her little battery operated ATV with her kitten, Bonnie. It was a sunny, lazy, beautiful summer Sunday afternoon when we came across the scene. We had to stop and grab an image of the moment.
It’s a moment Autumn’s mother, Jessica Hovland was happy that we grabbed because it wasn’t more than a week later, Bonnie the cat was hit by a passing vehicle.
Hovland wrote in to let The Enterprise know:
“Unfortunately Bonnie was hit by a car last night. I hope that you will still run the photo and put in a reminder that those driving down Pipestone Ave need to slow down and be more vigilant. We have seen many cars and semis fly down the street and are going well over 25 mph.”
“We find it very unfortunate that our officers in Flandreau are so quick to pull someone over near the casino, or other parts of town but rarely have we seen them pull someone over on Pipestone. We have also seen drivers cross the lines to purposely try to hit an animal or speed up to hit them, this kind of irresponsibility while driving makes us wonder how long it will be before it's not just an animal that's hit.”
“My family and I thank you for your consideration and we would appreciate a copy of the photo if possible. That was the last one taken of my daughter and her cat. Thank you, Jessica Hovland”
Hovland says her daughter and the entire family, are heartbroken.
“That was our first cat, that I’ve ever had as a pet anyway, pretty much any of us. She was such a good cat and why we took it so hard. She was sweet, obedient and she was going to be a pet therapy pet for the Indian School so we were all pretty upset,” said Hovland.
But as she mentioned in her note above, this isn’t just about that cat. The young mother adds there are numerous families that live along Pipestone Avenue in Flandreau. And there is widespread concern about the speed many come through town driving, when it comes to keeping their kids safe.
“It’s hard, we try to keep them in the back (yard) as much as possible. But they like to ride bikes, we have to be extra careful all of the time. We don’t let them out on Sunday mornings until church is let out just because it’s so busy. Even though it’s 25mph, we see people come flying down the street all the time,” said Hovland.
While 5-year-old Autumn knows to watch for passing traffic, that’s not what she’s upset about right now. She’s missing Bonnie. Her cat.
“I know it’s just a cat, our pet and to others it might not be a big deal. But if people are intentionally doing this, and we feel it was based on where and how we found her, you’re not just killing an animal. You’re hurting those that care for them, who’ve invested time and money in these pets and it’s not just something funny to do.”
Hovland says Autumn doesn’t know yet, but the family plans to adopt two new kittens from the Brookings Humane Society soon. Which, will from now on, solely be indoor cats.