They say cats have nine lives, and for one Siamese cat yesterday in San Francisco, after nine long, lost years, he was finally reunited with the people he shared his first life with.
Vanilla the cat went missing from his owner, Dara Gerson, nine years ago in Sausalito, Calif., and was presumed to be lost forever. Despite Gerson’s and her daughters’ efforts to find him, posting signs around the neighborhood and searching for days, the cat was nowhere to be found.
“We lived in Sausalito and my older daughter was holding the cat, and somebody had a dog that scared the cat and the cat ran out of her arms,” Gerson told ABCNews.com. “We put up posters and asked everyone in the neighborhood and never found him. But we never gave up hope. I’m a pretty intuitive person and assumed he was still alive.”
Vanilla was indeed alive, and had somehow over the years made his way across the Golden Gate Bridge to a home in Noe Valley, about six hours away from Gerson and her family.
"We don’t know how he got Vanilla at all, but we took him into custody because his then owner wasn’t able to take care of him,” said Kristen Hall, a worker with Animal Care and Control.
“Whenever an animal comes in, we scan them for microchips. Vanilla had a microchip and it did not match up to the person he had been living with, which was the man that had been hospitalized. But it matched up to Dara, who had the same cellphone as all those years ago.”
Since losing Vanilla, Gerson had moved to Topanga, Calif., but luckily had never changed her cellphone number that she registered to Vanilla’s microchip. She was elated to hear Vanilla had been found all these years later.