Our pets become a big part of our family. They show us love and affection, they protect us from danger, and they take up a lot of our time. When a pet goes missing it can be devastating for everyone who has welcomed them into the home. Thankfully, there are times when our beloved pets find their way home and a joyful reunion is witnessed. These pets ran away or were lost because of circumstances outside of their control. In the end, their families were reunited and had some amazing stories to share.
A Blind Dog Reunited
Abby was living the good life with her adult and child humans when she was separated from her family during a massive snowstorm in Alaska. She was missing for a full week before she navigated her way back to the family home. Abby was reunited just before Christmas time, making her return the happiest of holiday presents. This dog’s story doesn’t stop there, it turns out Abby is blind and had to use her sense of smell to find her way back to the house and she did it while climbing through miles of deep snow.
When a pet goes missing our first instinct is to frantically drive and walk around in search of our family friend. Unfortunately, many dogs and cats flee quickly and they are left to fend for themselves. This little Chihuahua mix was missing for a full two months when their owner spotted him in the newspaper! A local shelter rescued the scared pup and featured him as “pet of the month” in the newspaper’s weekly circular. His owner happened to be reading the newspaper and saw her missing friend which led to a happy reunion.
Puzzle was taking a walk with his owner in Seattle when he escaped from his leash and ran off. A search was conducted and “lost dog” signs were created (like the one featured in this photo). This time it wasn’t a rescue shelter or Good Samaritan who returned the dog, but rather the puppy himself. After one-week Puzzle simply noticed his family’s back door was open and he walked into the home as if nothing wrong happened. We love the extra touch his owner took when they crossed out the “lost” in their “lost dog” poster.
Nancy was fleeing from a forest fire when she lost track of Muscat. The Middletown Animal Hospital wrote about the lost cat following a giant blaze that tore through Lake County, California. Four people were killed and almost 2,000 structures were destroyed during the blaze. Days after the fire, Nancy was outside of her home when she noticed a cat that looked a lot like her own. “So she stopped, and he came to her,” staff for the animal hospital wrote on Facebook. The animal hospital set up a fund to help Muscat and Nancy through their difficult time.
A Cat Reunited With A Syrian Refugee
Syrian refugee Moner Al Kadri and his cat, Zaytouna (Olive in Arabic), were fleeing from Syria when German officials took Zaytouna and put her in quarantine. The couple was forced to stay in a horribly run camp and eventually sought help from German immigration activists. In mid-December, they received a visit from a government worker who returned their long-lost cat. Despite not speaking a word of German, officials realized the cat meant the world to the refugees and they made sure to return their feline friend as soon as humanely possible.
A Real Life Pet Detective
Ruca, an eight-year-old Shih Tzu, went missing for a full week. Ruca was given to Brittney by her husband while he was serving in Iraq. The couple eventually wed and their dog was part of a close bond they shared. Ruca escaped from the family’s home by digging a hole under a fence and then escaping into the surrounding neighborhood. The couple was so distraught with their loss that they hired a real pet detective who quickly got to work and eventually hunted down their four-legged friend and reunited them.
Pooka, a Chihuahua-dachshund mix, took quite the journey before she was reunited with her family. Pooka was missing for 18 months after fleeing her home. She traveled from Kentucky all the way to New Mexico. Despite her long and perilous journey, she was eventually captured by a local shelter and returned to her owner. Just like some of the other animals on our list, she was returned home because her owner remembers to have her microchipped. 18 months is a long time to lose a pet but this story ended with a happy final result.
Hugs For Hours
When this fluffy friendly giant went missing during play time at the park his family was devastated, especially his young friends. He was missing for a full week before he found his way home and reunited with his adult and child family members. His human mom posted this photo. Apparently, the young boys were so happy to have their big friend back that they refused to stop hugging him. The boys hugged the dog for hours before they finally accepted that he wasn’t about to disappear for a second time.
When Aka ran away from home days turned to months. After more than two years their owner was sure the lost puppy was gone forever. Like many pets who are returned to their owners, Aka was eventually caught by rescue workers and brought to an animal shelter for an examination. It didn’t take long to realize that Aka was a lost dog who had thankfully been microchipped. Aka’s owners were thrilled to receive a phone call explaining that their long lost dog had been rescued and was in surprisingly good health.
15 Years Later
When Tori Takayesu received a phone call from the Maui Humane Society about her lost cat, she was completely sure they had made a mistake. The shelter told Tori they had found her tortoiseshell tabby, but she hadn’t seen the cat in 15 years. At first she ignored the shelter, but eventually, an animal control officer visited Takayesu’s house to remind her about the shelter. Fearing that the senior cat would be euthanized, Tori decided to visit the shelter. She was handed a carrier and was shocked by what she saw. “I opened it up, and I was like, ‘Oh my god! That’s my cat,'” Takayesu said. “It was crazy.”
Gizmo is an adorable eight-year-old Shih Tzu who was nearly lost forever. After he managed to get out of his owner’s house, this puppy went on the lamb for a full four months. Smaller dogs stand less of a chance of survival when left to find for themselves. Despite the odds, Gizmo managed to find food and water for a full four months before he was discovered. Thankfully, his human parents were smart and had Gizmo microchipped to make sure they would never lose track of their adorable furry family member.
A Facebook Reunion
Denzil the cat managed to escape from their home and owner Rebecca Code became immediately concerned for the safety of her beloved family cat. After searching for more than a year, Code stumbled upon a picture of her cat on the Blue Cross Torbay Facebook page. They were able to verify that it was her cat because of the unique markings all over the animal’s body. Owner and cat were soon reunited because of the social reach power of Facebook. Denzil was not microchipped so the chances of a reunion without the social network were low.
Kids Reunited With Their Beloved Cat
Sheryl M. knew her children were devastated when their 13-year-old cat when missing. The family feline was gone for an entire two weeks before she was discovered and reunited with the family. Realizing her children would react in a happy way, Sheryl set up a camera and reintroduced her kids to their furry friend. At the 1:00 mark she asks her son Shane what he thinks. The young man responds, “I’m so — I’m so happy. The love these kids have for their family cat reminds us that our four-legged friends bring a lot of joy into our lives.
A Cat And Blind Dog
This special reunion involved a cat and her friend, a blind dog who were separated for a while. When a mom was offered a new job she took her daughter’s blind dog, Coco, with her. Coco and her cat, Jasper, hadn’t seen each other in years. The moment Coco enters the room, his friendly buddy immediately approaches him and cuddles up to her puppy buddy. When Coco was no longer with Jasper for a long period of time, the house cat would stand by the back door in the hopes that her friend would soon return. Their friendship proves that some animal reunions are not just about the humans in the household.
Reunion With A 20-Year-Old Cat
During a trip to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the 20-year-old travel companion of Raymond McNamara ran away. In a distraught state, McNamara stayed in Florida for two months, posting flyers and searching desperately to find his feline friend. After failing to find his cat, the 50-year-old man drove to California in search of work. Weeks after his blind and deaf cat went missing, his mother received a call from rescue volunteers. They found the cat near a beach where she was last seen. “I climbed in my car as soon as I could and started driving back to Florida, with tears of joy all the way,” McNamara told PEOPLE. “What a glorious occasion. Really, it’s a miracle.”
Reunited After Eight Long Years
The Crossland family lost their beloved cat, Silvie, and they were devastated. Silvie had lived with the family for eight years and she was a huge part of the family. Coldstream Animal Aid discovered the lost cat and called the family to report the good news. Steve Crossland’s wife got the call and decided to record his surprised reaction. “We said what cat, because we had sort of moved on a bit,” Steve explained. His cat was missing for a long time and the purebred British Shorthair Lilac kltten, was well looked after by an elderly lady. When the elderly lady moved into a nursing home, the cat was discovered and returned to their rightful owners.
An International Reunion
Pharfalla made national headlines in Canada after she traveled from McLeese Lake in Central, B.C. to Surrey. The cat was missing for a full two years before her owner, Pascale Makortoff, received a phone call about his missing feline friend. “I thought she was killed by a bird or carried away by an eagle or something like that,” said Makortoff. In a funny moment, reporters attempted to interview the eight-year-old tortoiseshell to determine her exploits. The cat was returned because of a Swiss microchip discovered under his skin. It turns out she was rescued in Germany before her owner moved to Canada.
This Cat Was Reunited With A Soldier
A veteran who was serving in Baghdad rescued an adorable little kitten and named her “Mr. Meowgi. Navy reservist Brad VanCleave was serving in July 2015 when he found the baby kitten with their head sticking out from a shipping container. He started feeding the kitten and their mom. When he was scheduled to be relocated to Iraq, he knew the baby wouldn’t survive. Instead, he gained permission to have the feline flown to his family who met the cat at the Los Angeles International Airport. The orange and white tabby now live with the VanCleaves and the family’s other cat and dog. This guy takes the cake as the ultimate animal lover.
Rescued From A Hurricane
Jessie Pullins and his dog JJ were separated in the chaos of Hurricane Katrina. Jessie had no intention of leaving his dog behind but they were separated in the storm. JJ was quickly saved by a local shelter and rehomed by a facility in California. In a twist of fake, Pullins discovered his lost dog while watching a TV show that featured rescued dogs from the storm. His dog was already adopted and Jessie Pullins spent a year in court to win back the right to take his dog home. The dog’s adopters eventually agreed to send the dog back to their rightful owner. We have to mention that “JJ” is short for Jessie Jr.
Another Dog Rescued From Near Death
Kita is one of several dogs on our list to be rescued from near death during Hurricane Katrina. When Lionel Petrie was rescued during the storm, he was given the devastating news that rescue workers were not allowed to take his dog. One of the rescuers, Shawn Alladio, was so moved by the man’s story that he vowed to return for the dog and personally rescue the man’s pet. One week later, Alladio kept his promise, returning to the storm-ravaged area where he found the dog and returned them to Petrie. Alladio drove the dog to Baton Rouge for the tear-filled reunion.