After two years of wondering what happened to their 10-year-old orange tabby cat, a Cranberry Township family was reunited with the animal on Saturday.
Heather Moon and her two daughters, Kayla, 15, and Alyssa, 13, were excited to finally see their missing feline friend, Katie, at the Butler County Humane Society.
Katie was reunited Saturday with the Moons after nearly two years being missing.
“We are just happy to have her back,” Moon said. “She is still very much a part of the family.”
Moon said when she was contacted by the humane society, she was at first confused because they asked if she had lost a cat, but her current feline friend, Oliver, was at home with her family.
“When I realized they were talking about Katie, we got very excited, and Kayla's face just lit up,” she said, adding Katie was very much Kayla's pet.
“I am so glad to have her home,” Kayla said.
Katie was brought to the humane society on Friday as a stray, found at an apartment complex in Cranberry Township, Shanna Best, kennel director, said.
She was scanned for a microchip and found to have one, but the chip was unregistered, she said.
Workers then called the chip company, which traced it back to Humane Animal Rescue, the organization that put in the chip, and were able to get the contact information for Moon and her family.
From there, it was just a matter of time before the family could be made whole again.
Heather said Katie slipped out the door when her dog was going outside, and wasn't seen again until Saturday. She and her family made Facebook posts and knocked on many doors in an effort to find the pet, but to no avail.
“We thought she just went and passed away,” she said. “I don't know what she's been through, but we are glad to have her back and our family is back together.”
Best said Saturday's reunion was a rare occasion.
“Not a lot of cats are returned to the owners,” she said. “The majority that come in as strays stay until they are adopted.”
She said it is important for people to understand that having their pets microchipped or identified with tags helps get them back in the case of a loss.
When a pet does go missing, she said it is also important to contact the local shelter and report the loss, which helps get the animals back to their homes.