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ST. CLOUD — After about 40 days on the run and another seven recovering at a foster home, Tom the "Lost Trucker Cat" has been reunited with his humans.

Tom, the 1-year-old gray and white cat who escaped from his owner's semi in St. Cloud in mid-January, was found at a Sauk Rapids business last week.

He was greasy and covered in metal shavings from the dumpster where he was hiding. But after several baths and a week's worth of naps and small meals of high-calorie wet food, Tom is finally on the mend. His owners, Angel Anthony Garcia and Marie Sanchez of Yuma, Arizona, picked him up Sunday evening.

"You see that sigh of relief when they're finally safe," said Crystal Markfort of St. Cloud, who tended to Tom at her home over the last week. "It was amazing to see. Every morning, he looked better and better."

On Monday, Markfort posted a video to the "Tom the Lost Trucker Cat" group showing Tom get scooped up by Sanchez, who then showered him with kisses and scritches.

"It was amazing. I couldn't believe he was actually found — that my baby survived," Sanchez said Monday. "I was sad because the minute I touched him, I just felt skin and bones. That was heartbreaking. He was a chunky boy and he lost all his weight."

When Tom was found, he was down about half of his body weight. Sanchez said he has spurts of playful energy but has been snoozing most of the day.

"He's still tired. He's not fully himself. But he has the whole top bunk to himself," Sanchez said from a rest stop in Wisconsin. Garcia and Sanchez were in Washington when Tom was found but were able to find a trucking route that allowed them to make a pit stop in St. Cloud on their way to Michigan.

People following Tom's story on the Facebook page donated about $500 to help cover veterinary bills for a broken tooth and pay for a subscription for a tracking collar. And many people donated supplies to keep Tom comfortable and fed for a long time.

Markfort created the Facebook group to help coordinate search efforts. Joining her as administrators of the group were Kendra DeLage, who is involved with trap-neuter-return programs that help stray cats, and Jan Peterson, who helps search for missing animals when their owners cannot look for themselves because they live elsewhere or have a medical condition that makes it difficult.

The three women hope Tom's story can highlight the importance of having pets microchipped.

"Be like Tom's parents — get your pets spayed and neutered. Get your pets microchipped. Be like Jeremiah — if you see an animal in distress, help them. Take notice," Peterson said. "Get involved and please adopt if you have room. The pet in the kennel today could be euthanized tomorrow because there's so many animals in the system. They are dying to be adopted."

Sanchez plans to post updates from Tom's journey to recovery on his own Instagram page @tomthetruckercat. She said she and her husband are so grateful to the people who searched for Tom, donated to his recovery and have shared stories with them about how Tom's happy ending has inspired them.

"The fact that he can touch people that way, it just makes my heart warm," she said. "He did the same for me. He's not just a cat. Tom can capture people's hearts and he does something in their lives."