'It's a Christmas miracle': Rescued cat gives new meaning to holidays for Regina man

Adopting a cat that was abandoned has helped a Regina man make new positive Christmas memories after losing his dad around the holidays.

Six years ago, Mason Gardiner's dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer

Kevin the cat was found abandoned in freezing temperatures this winter and was taken to the Regina Humane Society with severe frostbite. Now he's found a loving home with Mason Gardiner - who says the cat meant a lot for him at a meaningful time in his life. (Submitted by Mason Gardiner)

Kevin the cat got his name after being left alone just like Kevin McCallister. 

He wasn't left alone at home like the fictional eight-year-old, but left abandoned in freezing temperatures on a grid road outside of the city.

He was found huddled in the corner of a crate underneath a pile of snow with some dog kibble to eat. He was brought to the Regina Humane Society where they helped him recover from severe frostbite.

Staff with the organization nursed him back to health after a portion of his tail and ears were removed due to frostbite, and groomed out his matted fur.

The Regina Humane Society posted Kevin's story on social media asking for donations to help in Kevin's recovery.

Kevin adjusts to life in his new forever home. (Submitted by Mason Gardiner)

That's when Mason Gardiner saw him.

"I've been looking for a cat for about a year now and it just seemed like there wasn't the right fit for me. And the moment I saw him, even without reading his story, I just felt like that's my cat," said Gardiner.

Gardiner was moved to help Kevin and followed his journey until he was up for adoption.

He was able to adopt the cat just in time for the holidays and said it has been life changing.

"It's a Christmas miracle," said Gardiner.

The story of Kevin the cat, who was left alone just like his namesake Kevin McCallister from Home Alone, captured attention after he was rescued and taken to the Regina Humane Society to recover from severe frostbite. Now Kevin has a home, thanks to Regina's Mason Gardiner. (Regina Humane Society/Facebook)

Six years ago, Gardiner's dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer two days before Christmas Eve.

"Ever since then, it's been a pretty triggering time for me. We ended up losing him just 34 days after that. So it's been a sad time for me for the past couple of years," said Gardiner.

He said Kevin arrived in his life just as the weight of the anniversary of his dad's death, seasonal depression and the impact of the COVID-19 were feeling insurmountable.

"He is a rescued cat but he's also rescued me for sure," said Gardiner.

Gardiner said staff lined up to say goodbye to Kevin as he left the Regina Humane Society.

"I've seen just how life changing the services they provide. Not just life saving, but life changing," said Gardiner.

"They truly care about what they do. And I was so touched by how much they truly care about their the work they do as well as the pets that they're saving."

Once Kevin arrived at Gardiner's home, he wanted to cuddle immediately. 

Gardiner said Kevin never leaves his side, constantly wanting to cuddle and purring 24/7. He said Kevin follows him around the house, meowing until he receives pets.

"It's just the perfect match and I'm just so lucky."


Samanda Brace

Current Affairs Associate Producer

Samanda Brace (she/her) is a Current Affairs Associate Producer where she gathers stories mainly for CBC radio's The Morning Edition. She has been with CBC Saskatchewan since 2014.