Coming Home After 14 years, Just To Say Goodbye

Just a week ago, Ralph, the cat in the photos, was re-united having been separated from his humans for 14 long whole years. And now, he is dead. Ralph turned up as a stray and was reunited with his family by the Animal Rescue League of Iowa after a Polk County Animal Control officer brought him to the shelter, where staff found his microchip and, with some effort, traced him to his family. where his micro-chip was traced back to his original forever family.

Ralph’s family welcomed him back with open arms and said they were happy to have him back in their lives once again to kind of picked up where they left off as a family.

To live out the rest of his time with people who knew and loved him, even having been separated from them. Sadly, those remaining days proved to be be limited, but his last two weeks were spent surrounded by love with mother and daughter Rita and Jill.

Ralph originally joined the family as a kitten, when he was a Christmas gift when she was a young girl. Jill and Ralph were closely attached to one another, and the little girl and her cat were always together.

Jill Petticord, now in her early 20s and now a mom herself, told KCCI Channel 8 News for their story on the reunion:

“I am just glad that he gets to finish out his life with me and not somewhere out on the streets and I can make sure that he has a good ending to his life.”

Ralph passed away at the emergency vet Wednesday evening after efforts to save him with CPR were unsuccessful, according to an update by KCCI.

The Animal Rescue League of Iowa shared the news at Facebook just last night, writing: It’s with heavy hearts that we share our beloved Ralph passed away tonight. It took 14 years for him to find his way back to his original family and only 1 week to say his final goodbye.

We don’t know what his life was like during those 14 years but know he felt nothing but love during the week he was in our care and in the week that followed with the family that so desperately hoped their time together would be longer.

Our thoughts are with Ralph’s family as they grieve this profound loss on the heals of such joy.”

Ralph did get to spend that last week of his life with his forever family. He held on just long enough to see them once again and say goodbye.