BILOXI, Miss. — Five years after wandering away in Hurricane Katrina's aftermath, a gray and white cat named Scrub has been reunited with his Mississippi family
The 7-year-old cat was brought to the shelter by a woman living 15 miles away who'd fed him as a stray the past couple of months but worried about his safety during a cold snap. The Humane Society of South Mississippi said Scrub was identified by an implanted microchip.
Scrub's owner, Jennifer Noble, told The Sun Herald newspaper she was skeptical at first when she received a call from the shelter. But by the end of the first night back, Scrub had snuggled in bed with one of her boys.
More on charity and philanthropy
Susan Komen CEO's salary draws fire as donations drop
When the Susan G. Komen Foundation announced last week that it was canceling half of its 3-Day races next year, the charity blamed the economy. But it also acknowledged that its decision to stop providing funds to Planned Parenthood was a factor. Full story
- Soccer lover's fundraising trek ends in tragedy
- One Fund sets guidelines for marathon victims
- Pals, aged 6 and 7, raise $200,000 to fight rare disease
- Crowdfunding raises $2 million for Boston victims
- Susan Komen CEO's salary draws fire as donations drop
Noble told the Sun Herald that she thought the Humane Society of South Mississippi had the wrong cat as she listened last week to a message left on her husband’s office answering machine.
The message, the newspaper reported, said they had a pet brought in with her information on his microchip. She had given away two kittens — failed attempts to replace Scrub — and figured the message was about one of those.
“‘Do you have a gray and white cat?’” Noble said a humane society employee asked when she returned the call. Scrub is a Russian blue and tabby, mostly gray with white markings. The other cats had been gray, said the Sun Herald report.
“You have my cat! Oh my gosh!” she remembered saying. “That cat has been missing for five years!”
Only on NBCNews.com
- From belief to betrayal: How America fell for Armstrong
- US to Syria neighbors: Be ready to act on WMDs
- China: One-child policy is here to stay
- New 'Practice Range' shooter game says it’s from NRA
- 'Gifted' priest indicted in crystal meth case
- China's state media admits to air pollution crisis
- French to send 1,000 more troops to Mali
She said the employee replied, “‘Oh my gosh. Well, Merry Christmas!’”
“This is the power of microchipping,” humane society Director Tara High told the Sun Herald. “There is no other way that cat would have found its family. This is a very dramatic story with a wonderful ending.”
Scrub, who was about two years old when he disappeared, seems to be in excellent condition, Noble told the paper. A small chunk is missing out of one ear and the other has a scar where the fur didn’t grow back.
No air conditioning
Noble told the Sun Herald that Scrub had been a gift from her husband, Chris, and prior to Katrina, he was an indoor cat. That changed with the chaos caused by Katrina and the loss of air conditioning.
“We tried to keep him in a room [but] it was so miserably hot,” she told the paper. So she started letting him roam outside.
“The scenery was changing every day,” she told the Sun Herald. “I honestly think he got disoriented; that he just couldn’t find this way back.
“If he could talk,” Noble said, “I’m sure he has quite a story to tell us.”
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.