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But when 2-year-old Bethany Simpson came face to face with the cat that went missing from her parents' home just before her birth, she only had one question: ''What's she doing?''
The Simpson family, who had not seen their missing cat, Riley, since a week before Bethany was born in 2012, were amazed to see the cat's picture in the Otago Daily Times on Thursday.
Ian Simpson, of Dunedin, said his wife, Naomi, cried after recognising Riley - who was featured in the newspaper after being badly injured and taken to the Otago SPCA haven with a slipped collar around its belly.
''It's surreal; it's been more than two years,'' he said.
The Simpsons adopted Riley from the SPCA in 2009, when they lived in Moana Cres, Musselburgh, and the family re-adopted the cat on Saturday.
They said they were pleased to have their cat back and were excited at Bethany and Riley meeting.
And Bethany's first impression?
''She has big eyes,'' Bethany said.
Riley disappeared after the Simpsons moved to Andersons Bay in 2012 and, despite many searches, the family could not find her.
Earlier this year, Riley was taken into the care of the Otago SPCA after being found in Moana Cres with a slipped collar around its belly in a ring of rotted flesh.
When the cat was not claimed, the shelter named it Moana.
The couple arranged to visit Moana's foster home on Thursday night and knew instantly it was Riley.
While Riley was comfortable being petted and held by the Simpson family, she now faces adjusting to life with the family's other cat, Pan.