A beloved cat missing for nearly seven years – and found 180km from home – has been reunited with its elated owners thanks to the animal’s microchip and Ararat Rural City Council staff members.
Council’s Community Safety staff were this week able to reunite Felipé, an eight-year-old silver Burmilla, with his owners Ingrid and Hector Czubka and their son Nathan after finding the cat surrendered at the Council’s pound.
Felipé was just one year old when he went missing from his home in Melbourne’s western suburbs in 2013 after then 13-year-old Nathan was given him as a present. The cat had been microchipped and registered with the local council, both requirements by law.
Mr Czubka said Nathan had bonded strongly with the cat and was devastated when he went missing. When he told his now-adult son that Felipé had been found all these years later, Mr Czubka said Nathan had cried with joy.
“I could not believe it (when I got the call) – it’s a miracle!” Mr Czubka said.
Ararat Rural City Council CEO Dr Tim Harrison said that after scanning the cat for a microchip, staff members were able to track down the Czubkas, who still live in Derrimut where the cat went missing.
Dr Harrison said Ingrid and Hector made the trip from their home to Ararat to collect the cat the same day they got the call that he had been found.
“The Czubkas believe their pure-bred cat may have been stolen back in 2013 but unfortunately, we have no idea who left Felipé at the pound as he was dropped off over the weekend when no-one was there,” he said.
“It’s fantastic that Felipé was microchipped so we could reunite the family with their much-loved cat. Finding the cat’s owner after so long really demonstrates the importance of microchipping your pets – it’s an investment well worth the time and effort.”
Under Victorian legislation, all cats and dogs must be microchipped and registered with their local council.
Microchipping is a permanent method of identification, with a small chip – about the size of a grain of rice – implanted under the skin at the back of the neck.