A CAT which had been missing for almost SEVEN YEARS was reunited with his owners in France thanks to microchip technology.

Bugsy went missing back from Weston-super-Mare in 2012 and at the time his owners, Christine and Robert Holland, desperately searched for him but he was never found.

Three years ago the Hollands moved to France and took their three cats with them, including Muppet who is Bugsy's brother.

Miraculously, they have now been reunited with their missing cat after the RSPCA tracked them down through the details registered on his microchip.

Bugsy was given care from the team at RSPCA Brent Knoll Animal Centre until Christine and Robert were able to make the journey back to Britain to meet their missing moggy.

Christine said: “We had a phone call from the RSPCA inspector asking if we had a cat called Bugsy, we were confused and answered that we used to but had lost him almost seven years ago.

“She said that he was alive and well. We were shocked to say the least, thinking the worst had happened, and given up all hope of ever finding him. We even asked for a photo of him to be sent to us to reassure us that it was in fact our Bugsy

“As we still have his brother, we told her that we would like to bring him over to France to reunite with us. The RSPCA looked after him and arranged the necessary treatment needed for a pet passport and we had to wait three long weeks before we could come and collect him.

“He is now settled with us and our other three cats, six years and ten months after we lost him. We would never have got him back if we hadn't had him microchipped as a kitten. A huge thank you to the RSPCA for getting him back for us.”

Nikki Tutton, centre manager at RSPCA Brent Knoll, said she would urge pet owners to microchip their animals as it could help them find their pets in the future.

She said: “We were shocked to find out from Bugsy’s owner that they had lost their cat nearly seven years ago.

“This is a fantastic example of how pets can be reunited if they are microchipped and that the details on the chip are correct.

“Microchipping your pet gives them the best chance of being identified and returned to you if they become lost - and that was certainly the case with Bugsy.

“It’s always fantastic to be involved in a happy ending – and we’re so delighted we were able to get Bugsy back to his family.

“Every animal who comes in is always scanned for a chip, and we will do all we can to trace the owner.

“While it is heartbreaking to lose a pet, if they are microchipped there is a small part of reassurance that should they be found they will make their way back home to you.

“But is is also worth reminding people that if you do chip your animal, please always update the details should you move.

“While it is a legal requirement to have dogs microchipped it is not against the law to leave other pets - such as cats - without a chip. However, the RSPCA would encourage everyone to get their pets microchipped.”

For more information about microchipping, visit the RSPCA website.