The cat came back: Regina woman grateful for return of pet she thought she had cremated

A beloved pet returned from the dead? Nothing could be sweeter for the Regina woman who thought she had already cremated her beloved cat Zeppelin.

Zeppelin returns a little the worse for wear after long absence

Desiree Hobbins with her cat Zeppelin (Desiree Hobbins)

The cat came back, and nothing could be sweeter for the Regina woman who thought she had already cremated her beloved pet.

"To completely mourn someone that you love so much, and have them come back in your life, it's just like a movie," said Desiree Hobbins. 

Hobbins returned from travelling last year to find out from a family member that her cat Zeppelin wasn't around. 

Hobbins began putting up posters and talking with neighbours, and spent a week looking in vain as she started to lose hope.

Then she saw a post on a Facebook page about a dead cat similar to hers, and her heart sank. 

Her friends went to check out whether it was actually her cat, and they called her with bad news: They thought it was hers. 

Hobbins met her friends at the Regina Humane Society, and saw the cat presumed to be Zeppelin in a box and wrapped in a silk shirt. The cat had the same tattoo in his ear that Zeppelin, and everything else also checked out.

She hugged the cat and cried. To Hobbins, it felt like a family member had died. 

Zeppelin went missing, and Hobbins thought he was dead. (Desiree Hobbins)

Hobbins had the cat cremated, and spread its ashes at Wascana Trails. She mourned Zeppelin and even wrote a song about him. 

But nine months later she received a message from Regina Cat Rescue, telling her they had found Zeppelin. 

"It was just insane," she recalled. 

Hobbins called up rescue service and spoke with a woman who told her that there was no mistake. The microchip in the cat was the same one placed in Zeppelin. 

Hobbins was at work at the time so her mom went to go pick up Zeppelin,

Hobbins says Zeppelin is doing well — he was dishevelled and missing a tooth but otherwise OK despite his long absence — and perhaps a little feistier now, though he has always been a wild cat. He's currently living with Hobbins's mom in order to get a sense of normalcy back. 

"I want to say, just people don't lose hope when you're missing a pet," she said. 

With files from The Morning Edition