Family finds cat missing for months after recognizing his meow during a phone call

Woman outside with black cat
(Image credit: Getty Images)

A family based in Essex, England have had the best start to the year they could possibly have asked for after being reunited with their cat who went missing in the spring of 2021. 

Little Barnaby had been fitted with a microchip back in 2020, but it was only after he went missing eight months ago that his distraught owner, Rachael Lawrence, realized it didn’t work. 

The family were devastated when their beloved kitty didn’t come home one day, but in a surprising turn of events, they’ve been reunited in the most incredible of ways - and it’s all thanks to their other cat, Torvi.

On January 11, Lawrence was on the phone to her local veterinary practice to check up on Torvi, who had recently undergone an operation and was staying overnight. While she was chatting to the vet she heard a familiar meow in the background and asked whether it had come from Torvi. 

The vet replied that the meow belonged to a stray cat who had been brought in by a good samaritan, but after hanging up the phone, Lawrence couldn’t shake the feeling that she knew that meow.

"There was just something about the meow, so after three hours of it being in my head, I rang back up," Lawrence told SWNS. Phoning the vet back, she asked if the stray cat was black with a white blotch on his back foot and was stunned when the vet said her description matched the cat they were looking at.

"It was just utter disbelief from them and me. When I went to pick up Torvi, I asked to see this stray cat and brought photos of Barnaby with me," she explained. "I couldn't believe what was happening. I just cried when I saw him, full-on. I just couldn't believe it," Lawrence said of the reunion. "They brought him into the room, and I just straight away picked him up and knew it was him. I was sobbing, just absolutely howling."

And this time, Lawrence isn’t taking any chances with her escape-artist kitty, getting him re-microchipped and having the vet verify that it was working before she took Barnaby home.

"I got him chipped by the vet as soon as we were reunited, and we're just so happy that we've got him home. He's now eating really, really well, so we just need to get him back to full health," Lawrence said. 

You’ve got to love a happy ending! 

Kathryn Williams
Freelance writer

Kathryn is a freelance writer who has been a member of the PetsRadar family since it launched in 2020. Highly experienced in her field, she's driven by a desire to provide pet parents with accurate, timely, and informative content that enables them to provide their fur friends with everything they need to thrive. Kathryn works closely with vets and trainers to ensure all articles offer the most up-to-date information across a range of pet-related fields, from insights into health and behavior issues to tips on products and training. When she’s not busy crafting the perfect sentence for her features, buying guides and news pieces, she can be found hanging out with her family (which includes one super sassy cat), drinking copious amounts of Jasmine tea and reading all the books.