When Raymond MacNamara’s beloved rescue cat Lily accidentally wandered away from him during a trip to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, back in February, it lead to a frantic search to find her.
According to People.com, MacNamara put up fliers and asked locals about Lily for weeks, hoping that someone had spotted his 20-year-old cat, who suffers from poor vision and hearing.
Sick with worry and full of heartache, MacNamara says he had to come to terms with the idea that his cat was gone forever. With that, he left Florida to head back to California, without his best friend by his side.
But MacNamara’s story did not have a sad ending after all. In May, three months after Lily disappeared from his sights, MacNamara got a call that Lily had been hiding at a construction site and was found by local animal rescuers and brought to Pet Express Animal Hospital in Davie, Florida, for care.
The senior cat was alive and well, despite being on her own in the elements for weeks. She was dehydrated and had some matted fur, as well as scrapes and scratches that needed tending.
“Lily recovered well for as old as she is,” Dr. Molly Foreman of Pet Express Animal Hospital says. “[She] was still feisty and full of life after the first week, once she started feeling better with [fluid] therapy.”
In addition to helping her with her dehydration, Foreman and staff also put Lily on a high fat and high protein diet, removed her matted fur, and gave her antibiotics.
As soon as MacNamara heard the good news, he jumped in his car and went to go pick up Lily. One of Lily’s rescuers was on hand during the cat and owner’s joyous, emotional reunion and caught the incredible moment on camera.
In the heartwarming clip, above, you can hear a tearful MacNamara telling his feline friend, “Never going to get away from me again.” (Get the tissues ready, trust us.)
Foreman says she and the rest of the veterinary staff were thrilled to reunite MacNamara and Lily.
“He really loves Lily and we are honored to have helped in having a part of their reunion,” she says.
So that others never have to experience a scare like MacNamara did, Foreman urges pet parents to make sure their animals are microchipped with up-to-date contact information.
Aly Semigran is a lifestyle writer for the world, and roommate of Ruby, the cutest dog in the world.