15 Years Later, a Microchip Reunites Them

Photo provided by the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control via AP

Brandy, a brown tabby who went astray about 15 years ago has been reunited, older and maybe wiser, with her owner. She was reunited Monday afternoon with Charles, who adopted her as a 2-month-old kitten in 2005.

“It’s amazing. I think it’s unbelievable,” he said Thursday.

“I saw her, I picked her up and she started to purr and it was very emotional,” Charles said. “It was nice to have her in my arms again.″

”I did break down and cry because I thought about all of the years I lost from her,” said Charles, a computer technician who did not want his last name used.

He said that Brandy strayed only a few months after he adopted her.

“She went outside in the afternoon to our backyard,” he said. But when it got dark and he went to bring her inside, she wasn’t there. Charles drove around looking for her, checked animal shelters and put up signs without any luck.

“I was very sad,” he said. “I wanted her back because when I adopted her I made a moral obligation to take care of her for her life.” He feared she had been killed by a car or a coyote.

“But I was hoping someone would take her off the streets to take care of her, and I guess that’s what happened,” he said.

Charles went on with his life. He moved  and adopted two younger cats.

Then on Sunday, he received a call from the Los Angeles County animal shelter in Palmdale and another from the company that made a microchip implanted in Brandy when she was adopted. Charles had changed his address and home phone. But luckily, his cellphone number was the same as that listed on the microchip.

“I was skeptical. I thought, must be a mistake,” Charles said. ”Maybe there’s a 1-in-a-million chance it’s Brandy. But after 15 years, it’s highly unlikely.″

Still, “I said, yeah, the microchip wouldn’t lie.”

On Monday afternoon, he went to Palmdale to look at Brandy. She was older and very skinny, he said. Brandy needed a little help: She was malnourished and weighed only 6 pounds. “She basically weighed as much as when she was a kitten,” Charles said.

Her nails had grown to a Howard Hughes-like length, long enough to puncture her paws.

Despite the years she was lost, Charles said she was the same calm, gentle, sweet cat he remembered.

“She doesn’t have a lot of energy. But she seems very content,” Charles said. “She purrs a lot.”

He added: “She seems to be happy to have a home again.”

Dontcha just love happy endings?

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