Sam The Cat Recovered After Six Years!

cat face


This report was submitted by Sam’s Mom, Amy.
He recognized her after six years of being lost!

I found Sam as a feral kitten. He was the only kitten left in a litter that had been killed by a neighborhood dog. When I finally caught him he was a nasty little ball of hissing fluff, but he was safe. Eventually he came around and became a little more trusting of humans. I moved 3 hours away from my hometown where I lived with my significant other at the time out in the country and Sam was happy. He loved it there because he could be indoors but still go outdoors when he wanted. He had never really been able to adjust to being a strictly indoor cat.

I worked at the local animal shelter and I got all of my pets microchipped while I worked there. I learned that it was such a wonderful way to protect my pets that I loved so very much. When my relationship ended I needed to move back to my hometown but I knew that Sam would be miserable there. I would be living in town, where it wouldn’t be safe for him to be outside. It was a heartbreaking decision but at the time, what I felt would be the best option for his happiness. I know now that I was pretty naive to think that. In almost every instance, no one else is going to love your pet as much as you do…. I kept his microchip info in my name and updated it to my new info.

I found out that shortly after moving that my ex, for whatever reason, had to move and he just left Sam there. I made several trips back and forth, putting up signs around town and at the shelter where I used to work. I contacted the animal control officers and had them set out live traps as well as ride thru from time to time when they could. 6 years passed and every timeSam the cat I moved or got a new phone number, I updated his microchip info. Then one day, out of the blue, I got a call from that old shelter saying they had a cat named Sam there whose microchip was registered to me. He had been turned in by an elderly lady as her cat. She wanted him put down because he bit her! They said he acted quite feral and he was very sick. Luckily, instead of just taking her at her word, they managed to scan Sam for a chip.
Six years he’d been gone. Had he turned feral again? Would he remember me? Was he going to be ok? I took a day off and rushed the three hours back to to pick him up. When I got there I walked up to the cage and he was huddled up in the back corner hissing. I called him “Sam Sam” as I used to do and he instantly walked to the front and I rubbed his head thru the bars. He was really snotty and sneezy and a little underweight but I’d imagined a lot worse on my long trip there. He was still my Sam Sam. He remembered me. I was so happy to have him back. We made the long trip back and many many trips later to the vet he was finally on the mend. He still hates being indoors all the time but he is now an indoor only cat.

Why can't I go out?

Why can’t I go out?

He’s 13 now and still as frisky and playful as he ever was. No he’s not happy about not being able to go outside and he watches doors like a hawk just trying to catch a moment to dart out but we are very careful. We keep him busy with lots of toys and windows to lay in. This was all about three years ago and he is doing well. Happy and healthy and very much loved. He is affectionately nicknamed Sam the ginger-haired jerk. He shares a home with a 13 year old female cat I rescued from my old shelter, a 13 year old min pin and a 5 year old rat terrier. A crazy happy little family

1 Get your pet microchipped!
2. Keep the microchip registration up to date!
3. If you find a pet and the microchip information is outdated, Pet FBI may be able to We have a volunteer who has access to non-public  subscription databases. He can cross reference and usually can come up with current contact info. Just use the contact link at the bottom of this page.


Moving Day Advice For Pet Owners

Cat on mantel

R.I.P. Josie

We are writing this at the request of the Josie’s family. It is a sad story but may help prevent another tragedy.

When Josie’s family moved from Ohio to Texas they had the movers pack for them. They did not want to stress Josie and their other cat by confining them all day so they were not shut up and Josie’s Mom monitored the open doors in case they should run out, although both cats were “inside” cats.

When the truck was packed and ready to leave Josie could not be found. The family was anguished and paid the movers extra to unload all the boxes they had just packed – open, inspect and reseal them. They were terrified that Josie had jumped in and been shut up. But Josie was not found in any of the boxes.

The family delayed their own departure as long as they could. A very kind and helpful neighbor borrowed a trap from Pet FBI and faithfully set it out every night in hopes that Josie had somehow slipped out of the house on moving day and could be caught. Meanwhile, days later, the moving truck arrived at the warehouse in the other state but the contents could not be delivered due to a delay in being able to occupy the new house. Josie’s parents who were anguished with worry even had a friend go to the warehouse and again inspect the boxes.

Hopes ran high when a cat resembling Josie was spotted in the old neighborhood. Finally after a week the cat was trapped and all were elated …. until it was confirmed that the cat that was finally trapped was not Josie.

Eventually, the family was able to take delivery of their household possessions and the father carefully inspected each item personally to spare his wife any unpleasant surprises.

This story does not have a happy ending. Josie was found dead on the shelf of a sewing cabinet where she had evidently hidden. The cabinet had been shrink-wrapped and thus sealed, Josie probably died of asphyxiation. The only consolation in all this is that it was a at least a gentle death. The family had feared that she would die of heat and thirst in the moving van.

Josie’s family has asked that we share her story in order to spare others a similar tragic experience. Confine your pets on moving day.

We would also add, in regard to moving, that when you arrive at your new home – do not let your pets out without supervision. It may take several weeks before a cat gets the lay of the land and the risk of getting lost is reduced. Pet FBI gets a great many reports of cats gone missing right after a move. In any case it is always safest to keep cats inside –  there are just too many hazards for a free-roaming cat.

Our heartfelt condolences to Josie’s family and the faithful neighbor who helped. Josie’s little feline companion is reportedly also grieving. The temptation to be overwhelmed by guilt is great, but Josie’s family should take comfort in knowing that they did everything possible to help Josie and that while she was with them she enjoyed the best life a cat can possibly have. That is so much more than 9 out of 10 cats born in our great country ever have.

Franco Back Home After Two Months…Another Database Reunion!

Cat Found after two months

Franco: Reunited after two+ months

Franco went missing in June. He slipped away from a cat-sitting friend. Needless to say it was pretty distressing for all concerned.

Fast forward five or six weeks. A Good Sam noticed him. He was so shy she thought he must be feral. Thank God for this Good Sam! She was persistent and after three weeks finally caught him using a humane trap. She took him to a vet to be scanned for a chip. No chip – but the vet told her about the Pet FBI database. He wasn’t in bad shape so she checked the last two months, July and August.  No match. Then she checked June. SCORE!!! He was found only a few blocks from where he went missing.

Object Lesson:
1. You may need to trap in order to catch a stray.
2. Persistence pays!
3. Most cats are found quite close to home.

Darwin Reunited After Five Weeks Thanks To Pet FBI Database

DarwinA Good Sam found Darwin about half a mile away from home two weeks after he went missing. The Good Sam already had five cats and wisely took him to a vet to be tested for common infectious diseases. The tests came out negative but the vet did not scan the stray cat for a microchip and they did not suggest checking the Pet FBI database.

Three more weeks passed and a friend of the Good Sam suggested she check the Pet FBI database. And there he was! He is pictured here with his best friend Amelia who was thrilled to have him back.
Object Lesson: Possibly the vet thought it was the client’s intention to keep the cat, but knowing it was a stray, they should have checked it for a microchip. In fact, Darwin did have a microchip and would have been home three weeks sooner – which would have spared a lot of grief and worry! We strongly recommend microchipping and ID tags BUT they are not a guarantee of recovery. If your pet goes missing, you must use other resources as well!

Pet FBI was founded in Ohio in 1998 and has a very high success rate in Ohio because it is so well known and widely used. We averaged 145 reunions a month for the last three months within a 200 mile radius of Columbus. We went national only a little over a year ago, in May of 2014, but already the Pet FBI database is the largest national lost and found pet database. Please help promote more happy reunions by referring your vet, your groomer, your local pet supply place and shelters to It’s completely non-commercial and all services are free!

KiKI Found Cat

Kiki Found Cat | Reunited Pet FBII found the cat on my porch in early March, 2013. There are many strays in the neighborhood, but they tend to be very skittish. When I made eye contact with this cat, however, she came running over to me. She was very friendly and excitedly ate the cat food I gave her. Because of this behavior, I had a feeling that the cat belonged to someone and was lost.

I went online and searched on a few websites, including Pet FBI, to see if I could find a report of a lost cat matching her description. The date on the search page of Pet FBI had been automatically set to the beginning of the year (January 1, 2013), so I searched from that date to the present date. A couple of days later, with no responses to my “found” post, I extended my search back two months into the previous year.

Beatrice Back After One Week!

I received a call on Saturday night from a young woman, who had seen me out searching all week and had befriended Beatrice. She rents, was not allowed to have pets, often holds her neighbors’ cat on her lap, and was outside when Beatrice showed up in need of a friend. The neighbor’s children gave Beatrice a hot dog and milk. The young woman told me that she was going out of town on Sunday. She knew how hard I had tried to find Beatrice and refused to accept a reward.