A FAMILY cat trekked four miles back home after escaping from an emergency vet, the same day as detectives were deployed to find him.

Animal Search UK were hired by Medivet Southend to find black-and-white cat Gizmo, who fled the vets after he was taken in for a burst abscess on his face.

Gizmo’s owner Donna Gabrielle, 42, alleges the cat darted out of an open door when he was let out of his container for the emergency treatment.

Gizmo escaped September 5, and the vet hired the pet detectives to track him down to help Ms Gabrielle who were due to scour the Southend neighbourhood on Tuesday.

However, on Tuesday morning Ms Gabrielle was delighted to see Gizmo return home by himself, going four miles from the surgery in Eastwoodbury Lane to his home near the Kursaal building.

Ms Gabrielle said: “It was about 8.30am, it was so surprising as he didn’t even know the area, he doesn’t look like he’s lost weight.

“I was sitting downstairs and I heard him meowing and I looked out to the patio and he came straight up to the door.

“It was absolutely amazing, and wonderful to see the kids’ faces. My oldest had gone to work and he came straight back to see him.”

The team at Medivet were looking for Gizmo for half an hour after he escaped.

His escape prompted a huge search by volunteers from the Tilly’s Cloud rescue group and other residents of the area.

Gizmo will receive a check-up on his health in the near future.

Pet detective Andrew McNair, from Animal Search UK, said: “Very often cats are found no more than a mile away, but obviously there are many places a cat can become trapped and injured.

“Our most recent search, we found the cat under the floorboards of a nearby house, it was having an extension built, so no place is too unusual to find a lost pet.”

A spokesman for Medivet said: “We have launched a full investigation into how this has happened and will continue to support the owners, who are understandably upset.”