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Trucker Reunites With Feline Travel Buddy Four Months After He Went Missing

Losing a pet is terrifying, devastating, and any beloved fur-baby owner's worst nightmare.

But there's a huge difference between a cat running out of your backyard and one who gets loose during a pit-stop more than 1,465 miles away from home.

When truck driver Matthew B. lost his three-year-old cat and travel buddy, Ashes, at a stop in Ohio, he thought his sweet friend was gone for good. But after months of hopeless searching, the pair have finally been reunited, and it's all thanks to the power of microchips.

Matthew and Ashes often traveled together inside his massive 18-wheeler while he completed various deliveries cross-country.

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The inseparable pair kept each other company on long drives, and although some cats would bristle at the thought of spending all their time inside a moving truck, Ashes didn't mind one bit. In fact, he loved the trucking life. And Matthew loved him.

In July, the dynamic duo were parked at Love's truck stop in Springfield after trekking across the country together.

Google Maps | Love's Truck Stop

During their pause, Ashes somehow managed to accidentally slip out of the parked truck after getting spooked and made a mad dash for the bushes.

Fearing the worst, Matthew searched everywhere for his beloved cat, but wasn't able to find him. He was forced to leave the truck stop without his faithful travel companion.

For months, Matthew did everything in his power to return to that stop and search for Ashes.

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He rearranged his routes several times in order to head in that direction and went back to the very spot where he first lost his fur-buddy to look for him.

But sadly, each trip ended without finding Ashes.

In November, a kind passerby came across Ashes at the very same truck stop where he was first separated from his owner.

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The woman, named Kimberly, spotted the charcoal-colored feline wandering out of the brush in 13-degree weather, and feared for his safety, considering the freezing temperature.

"He was trying not to put his feet down on the ground, it was so cold," Kimberly told Lollypop Farm Humane Society.

Kimberly and her friend took Ashes (or "Smokey", as she temporarily dubbed him) back with her to Rochester, New York.

Google Maps | Lollypop Farm

There, she brought him to the local humane society, Lollypop Farm, where he was scanned for a microchip.

Not only did he have one, but he also had an owner who registered him under a Texas address — more than 1,465 miles away.

Matthew was promptly contacted and after four months of being apart, he was finally reunited with his long lost kitty.

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Overwhelmed with emotion, he burst into tears at the sight of Ashes and told the society this is his "Christmas miracle."

As the two headed back to Matthew's 18-wheeler, Ashes leaped from his owner's arms and into the truck, happy to finally be back where he belongs.

Matthew said he owes Ashes' unbelievable rescue to the kindness of Kimberly, and the power of microchips.

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"It's that microchip — without it, I wouldn't have ever gotten him back," he said. "If you love your pet, you just have to chip them."

"The women that found him saved his life," Matthew continued, "but the microchip brought him home."

h/t: Lollypop Farm