Beloved cat returns home 13 years after going missing in Redbridge
PUBLISHED: 14:47 11 August 2017 | UPDATED: 14:54 11 August 2017
A family’s beloved pet cat that went missing for 13 years has finally been reunited with her surprised family.
After such a long time, the Hopkins family had given up hope of ever seeing their beloved cat Hermione again, after she escaped as a kitten from their home in Redbridge in 2004.
But the cat-astrophe has had a purr-fect ending after the RSCPA got in touch after picking the moggy up in Billericay and identified her thanks to an implanted microchip.
Sue Hopkins said the family couldn’t believe their good luck when they received the call.
She said: “We were astonished, we couldn’t believe it. We are so happy to have her home.
“I’m so glad that the person who found her reported her to the RSPCA, I’m really grateful to everyone who helped get her home.”
Sue’s daughter, Emma, who was in primary school when Hermione went missing is now 20 and was amazed to have her home.
The family have also been joined by 10-year-old Isabel and Leo, four, since the feline went missing.
The Hopkins still have Snowy - who is now aged 20 - and also own another cat, Toffee, so they are hoping the trio will get on better now they’re older.
Sue was living in Redbridge, London, in 2004 when she brought home Hermione.
“We got her when she was a kitten from our childminder whose cat had had a litter,” Sue explained.
“But unfortunately she didn’t get on with our other cat, Snowy, so we asked someone to look after her for a week while we made some arrangements in the house to keep both cats happy.”
But, sadly, Hermione went missing after a series of events whilst she temporarily lived away from home.
The family moved from their home in Redbridge and went on to move three further times before settling in Walthamstow, but each time Sue contacted the microchip company to change the contact details on Hermione’s microchip - just in case.
She said: “My daughter would always ask me why I kept calling to update the details.
“But just because of that one in a million chance I thought I would keep doing it.”
Last week that’s exactly what happened.
On August 23, the RSPCA were contacted by members of the public who were concerned for the welfare of a cat who they believed lived with a man in Billericay, Essex, who had sadly died around a month earlier.
Officers went to check on the cat and, a few days later, were finally able to catch her.
She was suffering from fur loss and a flea problem.
When they spoke to the daughter of the man who had passed away she said that the cat had not belonged to him.
They scanned her for a chip and, sure enough, she was registered to an address 27 miles away in London.
Together RSPCA inspectors Rebecca Benson, Mitchell Smith, Karl Marston and Adam Jones managed to figure out Hermione’s story and return her home last week.
Now the happy moggy is back home with her family and is steadily gaining weight, said a relieved Sue.
She said: “It really upset me when I saw the state Hermione was in.
She looks very aged and all the fur was missing from her tail, it looked like a piece of string.
“She is hoovering up her food so she has obviously been scavenging to survive for some time.
“If she hadn’t been microchipped she could well still be scavenging for food or she could have even starved to death.
“It just goes to show you should always get your cat chipped and keep your details up-to-date - and you should never give up hope!”
For more information about microchipping, visit the RSPCA website: www.rspca.org.uk/microchipping.