A cat that went missing from a Cambridgeshire, England, home has been found nearly three years later.
Keith Bigland, 53, was left “distraught" when his late mother's beloved pet cat, Biscuit, vanished in 2017 after escaping from their home in Fenland.
But Mr. Bigland and his wife Su were in disbelief when a local vet called them last Wednesday to say their fluffy gold and white pet, now aged 14, had been handed in after he was spotted just a mile away from their house.
Biscuit has returned home after vanishing in 2017 (Joe Giddens/PA)
Speaking to the PA news agency, Mr. Bigland said:
“I still can't quite believe it, I had totally given up hope, we never thought the call would come."
“When he arrived at our house my wife threw her arms around the vet in relief."
“It's funny because as far as we know he could have been right around the corner the whole time, or miles away, we just don't know where he's been."
“What makes it even more special is that Biscuit was handed in just a few days after the third anniversary of my mother's death, which makes you wonder if she's watching over us."
Biscuit, who is nicknamed Bikkit by the family, was captured on CCTV escaping from a tiny gap at 4am on December 1, 2017.
Mr. Bigland confessed he probably went “overboard" during the “frantic" search, distributing posters around the local area and looking everywhere he could, despite a disability which affects his balance and coordination.
The couple said Biscuit and their five other cats are their 'children' (Joe Giddens/PA)
“I had hope at first, for months afterwards I was calling his name around every corner and looking into every bush."
“Biscuit is the last link I have left to my mother, which made it all the more worrying, but he was a feral cat before she took him in, so I thought he may have that natural survival instinct."
On his return Biscuit “was not in great shape" and was found to have problems with his breathing and heart.
Mr. Bigland estimates that Biscuit's veterinary costs will be around £1,500 (~$1,941), and has launched a GoFundMe page to help cover the costs.
“Although he looks and acts differently to before, I recognized him straight away, and he recognized me and hasn't stopped purring since."
“He's starting to recover now and at his older age I hope to spend more years with him – we have no kids, and my wife says our cats are our children, we're a family."