Three years ago, the staff at the Noah’s Ark Animal Hospital in Connecticut received an anonymous phone call, saying that an elderly cat was in need of rescue in the parking lot.
They went to investigate, and it was true; they found a malnourished ginger cat, and brought him in to be examined. There, they discovered that he only weighed 7 pounds, and was also suffering from stage 2 kidney failure.
But the dedicated staff was determined to bring this 13-year-old kitty back to health, and miraculously, they did!
They named him Billy. The initial plan was to put him up for adoption once he recovered. But by the time he’d regained his health and almost doubled in weight, the staff had become too attached to the sweet and loving kitty to let him go. So, they kept him as the resident hospital cat, instead!
For 3 years, Billy sauntered around the hospital at his leisure, enjoying life as a social 16-year-old cat.
“Billy had free reign of the hospital. He just roamed around everywhere and made his own little spot at the front desk in the reception area. Any time clients came in, they’d say ‘hi’ to Billy and Billy was very friendly in return,” said Rachel Keyes, and assistant at the hospital, to The Dodo.
Then one day, Mr. Sicconi and his daughter entered the hospital for the first time, and were welcomed by the friendly cat. The man couldn’t help but notice the striking resemblance that Billy had to their cat, Tuffo, whom they’d lost 3 years before. They had been moving, and despite looking everywhere for the cat, had never found him.
Suddenly, Billy started to act differently.
“Billy recognized them and jumped up on the very top of the counter, which he doesn’t do,” Keyes said in the story by The Dodo. “Then, he jumped right into their arms. Billy lets people pet him, but he never jumped into anybody’s arms.”
It was clear that Billy recognized these two! Mr. Sicconi and the receptionist began comparing notes about the mannerisms of “Billy” and “Tuffo,” and the similarities were obvious. For instance, Tuffo used to drink water by scooping it up with his paw–as did Billy.
There was one more “test” that would prove if Billy was, indeed, Tuffo.
“Later that afternoon, they came in with other members of the family and Billy’s twin brother, [Cotone],” Keyes said in the story. “The two cats recognized each other immediately.”
Now reunited, Tuffo and Cotone are as happy as can be. The staff at the Noah’s Ark Animal Hospital were sad to see their companion of 3 years go, but happy that he was reunited with his family, where he belongs. According to The Dodo, the family and the hospital staff remain in close contact.
What an amazing story! This just proves that if you ever lose a pet, never give up hope!
(h/t: The Dodo)