IONIA, Mich. (AP) — A flea-ridden Persian cat so weak she could barely stand was rescued from a residential garden in Ionia and reunited with her family in Grand Rapids after three years apart, an Ionia County animal control officer said.
Violet was found in Ionia on Aug. 6. She was covered in maggots, flies and fleas, the Ionia Sentinel-Standard reports.
Ionia County Animal Control Director Carly Quinn took Violet to a vet who was able to identify the 10-year-old because she was micro chipped. It took more effort to track down her humans 30 miles (50 kilometers) away.
Drew Potter adopted Violet from the Humane Society in 2012, but his contact information on the chip was outdated. Quinn persisted and found him on Facebook after a few hours.
The reunification of Potter and Violet was "beautiful," Quinn said.
Potter doesn't recall the exact date, but Violet went missing some time in 2016, he said. Potter said he gave Violet to his daughters as a gift when his family was going through a separation.
But suddenly, Violet disappeared. The girls tried to track her down. Potter suspected she was stolen or escaped.
"It was just a hard time for us," Potter said. "We got through it like we do. It's just strange when something like this happens. Life is just so different now than when we lost her. She brought back a lot of memories I had forgotten about it."
He said his daughters, now ages 21 and 11, were in tears when they learned Violet had been found. Potter called finding Violet a "blast from the past."
Potter said he wishes he knew where Violet has been in the intervening years, but he appreciates having her now.
"It's just one of those things where you've got to appreciate what you got," Potter said.
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