March 14 (UPI) -- A Massachusetts woman was reunited with her pet cat about five and a half years after the feline went missing from her home.
Elinore Repucci said she let Larry the cat out into her Essex back yard in July 2013, and she soon discovered the feline had left the yard and apparently wandered away.
"He was an indoor/outdoor cat at the time," Repucci told The Daily News of Newburyport. "He always came when he was called and he never went far. It was also drizzling out when I let him outside and I figured he would be back pretty soon. But he did not come back."
Repucci said there was no sign of Larry until the Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society called her last week to say a cat with a microchip bearing her information had been brought into the rescue.
Shelter officials said a man feeling birds in Salisbury, about 20 miles from Repucci's home, spotted the cat eating the bread he was throwing out.
They said they suspect Larry had been being taken care of for at least some of the time he was missing, since he was in generally good health when he was found.
"He remembers everything in the house, pretty much," Repucci said. "He knows where the food bowl is and where everything was. He's just getting to know the other cats and he's home. He's also had such a rough time of it and I don't I think he cares what anyone else thinks of him. He figures, 'This is my house and I'm going to go wherever I want.'"