Cat comes home after 12 years of living as a stray.
A cat who had been missing for over 12 years has finally been reunited with his family after being taken in as a stray by Cats Protection.
Black-and-white Quincey disappeared in December 2006 from his home in Witham, Essex, where he was the much-loved pet of Margaret Smith.
Despite months of searching, no trace was found, and Margaret died two years later, always believing he must have died in a car accident or from an illness.
Margaret's daughter Paula with Quincey the cat
But 12 years on, the adventurous puss was taken in by volunteers from Cats Protection’s Colne Valley Branch after he was reported as a stray living in Braintree, Essex.
A quick scan revealed Margaret’s details, and further research by Cats Protection volunteers using social media sites located her daughter Paula, who lives in Braintree.
Paula, who decided to keep her late mother’s cat said: “My mum really adored Quincey, he was such a friendly and lovable cat. She was heart-broken when he went missing and searched high and low for him, without any luck.
“Because Quincey had epilepsy, we thought he must have had a fatal fit, or had been hit by a car. Mum eventually moved on and even got another cat, before she passed away two years later.
“Then out of the blue last week, I saw a post on Facebook from the local branch of Cats Protection trying to trace relations of Margaret Smith, along with a photo of Quincey. They’d scanned him for a microchip and found her details but then discovered she’d died. I really couldn’t believe it and phoned straight away.
“It’s such wonderful news, and so great to see Quincey again. All my family are huge cat lovers, so I had no hesitation in taking him in. He’s a very old cat now, but he’ll be getting lots of cuddles and attention so he can live out his older years in comfort.
“Mum would have been really pleased he’s finally made his way back to us, as she really adored him.”
Jan Lardelli, volunteer at Cats Protection’s Colne Valley Branch, said: “Sadly Margaret died long before Quincey was found, but because he had been microchipped we were able to trace her family. It’s always lovely to see people reunited with much-loved cats, and it’s clear how special Quincey is to Margaret’s family.”
The happy reunion comes as Cats Protection renews calls for a change in the law to ensure that all owned cats, like dogs, are microchipped.
To find out more about the importance of microchipping, visit www.cats.org.uk/microchips-reunite