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Found East Islip cat McGee is inspiration for animal shelter's microchip promotion

Charlene Lanigan holds her cat McGee at her

Charlene Lanigan holds her cat McGee at her home in East Islip. The 5-year-old feline was reunited with his owner almost 36 months to the day he went missing. (Feb. 2, 2013) (Credit: Barry Sloan)

With a cat named McGee for inspiration, the Kent Animal Shelter in Calverton has declared March its “Luck of the Irish” microchip month.

McGee was reunited with his owner, Charlene Lanigan of East Islip, in January after he had been missing for three years.

Lanigan originally adopted McGee from the Kent Animal Shelter.

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“I went on line and looked at their website. There was this little bundle of gray fur,” said Lanigan.

“They chipped all their cats,” she added.

It didn’t seem important to her at the time. When McGee got out of her yard three years ago, she put up posters, and had friends look for the cat, but McGee remained lost.

Then, on Jan. 16 of this year, Lanigan got a call from someone at the Kent shelter who said, “We have Duncan here.”

Duncan was the name the shelter had given the cat when it took him in. Lanigan said she never contacted the shelter about his new name.

Turns out McGee actually had been spotted several times in Lanigan’s neighborhood, sitting in the sun on tables or chairs in people’s yards. She suspects he was fed by several people, and he finally was picked up by Bobby Boyle, a man who lived about a mile from Lanigan’s home.

After superstorm Sandy hit, the cat came to his door, and jumped in when he opened it, Lanigan said.

Boyle looked for posters and talked to neighbors about the missing cat, but found nothing. Finally, he took the cat to the Islip Town shelter, which used the chip to find the Kent Animal Shelter. And then shelter called Lanigan.

“It was exactly the day I lost him, three years later,” Lanigan said.

As part of the March microchip promotion, the shelter will put chips in any dog or cat for $20 instead of its normal $30 charge.

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