WHEN Rebecca Hawkins got a phone call from her sister, the last thing she expected to hear was the cat she had lost three years ago had returned.
In 2011 Ms Hawkins moved into a house that didn't let her have a pet. She gave Hope to a friend in Oxley to look after until she found pet-friendly accommodation. But, weeks later, Hope disappeared.
"Cats do that, I wasn't too surprised or disheartened to be honest," Ms Hawkins said.
"Then on Tuesday, I got a call from my sister telling me they had Hope.
"I couldn't believe it when I got the phone call. After all these years I just wasn't expecting to see her."
The cat was registered by microchip to her sister after she was adopted from the RSPCA as a gift for Rebecca.
Hope had appeared at the house of a woman in south-west Brisbane who had started feeding it. A week or so after the cat began coming to her house, the woman took it to a vet to see if it had a microchip.
"The vet was in Inala, so it doesn't sound like she went too far from Oxley where she went missing," Ms Hawkins said.
Now living on a property outside Lowood, Ms Hawkins said she didn't know what to expect from her long-missing cat.
"I thought her nature might have changed after so long, especially if she'd been living in the bush," she said. "But it's like she's never left. Her personality is just the same.
"I wondered if she'd know who I was, but when I leave the house she does start to come looking for me, so I think she still does."
The reappearance of Hope, last week, has come at the perfect time for Ms Hawkins who said she'd recently lost a family member.
"Sometimes things happen for a reason. And I think this might have been one," she said.
"It's come at a time when we needed something."
- Having a microchip implanted in Hope led her to being united with her owner
- Microchips, which can be installed through the RSPCA, are about the size of a grain of rice and implanted between the shoulder blades
- When the chip is scanned a number which correlates to an independent microchip registry is shown. From this the owner's personal details are recorded.