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Long-lost cat, owner reunited with help from Facebook

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By Theresa Seiger, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

WEST MILFORD, N.J. — More than two years after a New Jersey family last saw its 13-year-old cat, the animal was reunited with his owners thanks to a post on a missing animal Facebook page.

Jimmy disappeared in September 2014, leaving his owners to speculate that he might have jumped into the open window of a parked car and accidentally hitched a ride away from their home in Wanaque, NorthJersey.com reported.

“He would go to the front door like a dog when he had to go to the bathroom, but he would always come back and meow at the door to come in,” owner Susan Zelitsky told the news site. When he failed to return from a trip out of the house on Sept. 13, 2014, “we were devastated,” Zelitsky said.

The family put up fliers for months in hopes of finding Jimmy, to no avail.

Last month, Zelitsky thought she saw a familiar face in a Facebook post shared by one of her friends. A cat was taken to the West Milford Animal Shelter after a blizzard struck in March, and two photos of the cat were posted to the Lost West Milford Pets Facebook page.

After trading Facebook messages about the cat, Zelitsky visited the shelter on March 22 to see whether the feline was Jimmy, NorthJersey.com reported.

“When they opened the crate door, I said, ‘Jimmy is that you, bud?’ and he walked over and head-butted me and smooshed his nose into the dog’s toy,” she told the news site. “I immediately started to sob. He started to rub up against us, and when I was rubbing his belly he nipped me, which he always did.”

She said her family was initially skeptical that the cat could be Jimmy, but that faded as it became clear that he was familiar with the Zelitsky home’s layout. He even claimed a favorite dining room chair, the same one he favored more than two years ago, according to NorthJersey.com.

“If it wasn’t for the wonderful people at WMASS, we would have never had this happy reunion,” Zelitsky said.

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