A DELIGHTED couple were reunited with their beloved pet cat after he went missing from their home – for almost SEVEN YEARS.
Black and white moggy Bugsy wandered away from his family home back in 2012, and distraught owners Christine and Robert Holland searched desperately for him for years.
Eventually, in 2016, the despondent cat-lovers moved from their home in Weston-super-Mare, to France, with their three remaining cats in tow – including Bugsy’s brother, Muppet.
But Christine and Robert were stunned when, earlier this year, they received a call from RSPCA Brent Knoll Animal Centre back in Somerset, saying they had Bugsy – alive and well.
The miracle cat is now happily settled back with his family and his feline sibling in France – a whole six years and 10 months after he went missing.
Christine said: “We had a phone call from the RSPCA inspector asking if we had a cat called Bugsy.
“We were confused and answered we used to but had lost him almost seven years ago.
“She said he was alive and well. We were shocked to say the least, thinking the worst had happened, and given up all hope of ever finding him.
“We even asked for a photo of him to be sent to us to reassure us that it was in fact our Bugsy.
“As we still have his brother, we told her we would like to bring him over to France to reunite with us,” she added.
Quite what happened to Bugsy is not clear, but he turned up at the RSPCA Brent Knoll Animal Centre, where he was microchipped and his real identity discovered.
And now Christine is encouraging others to microchip their pets, saying: “We would never have got him back if we hadn’t him microchipped as a kitten.
“The RSPCA looked after him and arranged the necessary treatment needed for a pet passport and we had to wait three long weeks before we could come and collect him.
“He is now settled with us and our other three cats, six years and 10 months after we lost him. A huge thank you to the RSPCA for getting him back for us,” she said.
The RSPCA described the discovery as ‘miraculous’, and said it was a timely reminder to all pet owners to get their animals microchipped.
“We were shocked to find out from Bugsy’s owner that they had lost their cat nearly seven years ago,” said Nikki Tutton, the centre manager at RSPCA Brent Knoll
“This is a fantastic example of how pets can be reunited if they are microchipped and the details on the chip are correct.
“Microchipping your pet gives them the best chance of being identified and returned to you if they become lost – and that was certainly the case with Bugsy,” she added.
“It’s always fantastic to be involved in a happy ending – and we’re so delighted we were able to get Bugsy back to his family.
“Every animal who comes in is always scanned for a chip, and we will do all we can to trace the owner.
“While it is heartbreaking to lose a pet, if they are microchipped there is a small part of reassurance that should they be found they will make their way back home to you.
“But is is also worth reminding people that if you do chip your animal, please always update the details should you move.
“While it is a legal requirement to have dogs microchipped it is not against the law to leave other pets – such as cats – without a chip.
“However, the RSPCA would encourage everyone to get their pets microchipped,” she added.