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Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Found and Lost

Two days ago we had a very heavy overnight rainfall, 0.7" in less than 12 hours, along with some wind. It was quite refreshing after several days of unbroken sunshine, and Beth and I enjoyed listening to the rain, though our cats stayed indoors and Ghost slept on the bed for the first time. He gnawed our toes in the early hours to show he was still feeling chipper.

Just as I was getting ready to leave for work the next morning, we discovered that the rain had brought something new to our garden: a big golden dog.

Beth and I whipped outside, via separate exits, and rounded up the poor damp canine, who after a brief attempt to evade me, willingly approached Beth and allowed himself to be caught. We brought the dog into the garage, gave him a bowl of water and some catfood which he wolfed down, and some towels to lie on. I then had to leave for work, leaving Beth to try to locate the owner.

In my absence, Beth took the dog along to our neighbour Jane who has two large dogs of her own, and is currently dogsitting a third, and our stray happily joined their ranks. Jane and Beth drove the dog to our local vet, but they couldn't find any microchip implant, and of course we'd already checked for a nametag on the collar. There was a collar, the kind that is supposed to react to an invisible fence by giving the dog a small electric shock, but obviously it didn't stop this chap from straying.

By my first break at 11am Beth had taken pictures and created some posters, and after they got back from the vet trip Jane and Beth took all four dogs for a walk round the neigbourhood, putting up the posters on mailboxes and telegraph poles.

By 2:30pm there was still no communication from the owner, and Beth came over to WalMart to do some necessary shopping. Whilst there, she finally received a phone call from the owner, who had been astonished to see the posters because they hadn't realised their dog was even missing.

I got home from work around 4:30pm to hear the last chapter. The dog, named Yoshi, is scared of the noise of wind, so during the night he must have run away, coming along the bank of the creek behind the houses from their garden which is two cul-de-sacs further south. Yoshi had never strayed before so the owner

1) hadn't had him microchipped
2) hadn't put a nametag on his collar,
3) hadn't put his rabies tag on his collar, and
4) hadn't replaced the batteries in his electric collar.

We're very happy that Yoshi is reunited with his owners, and the family have small children who were very happy to see him again, but I have a niggling concern that the owners were irresponsible in doing nothing to ensure that if their dog ever strayed he would be quickly identified and returned. Not putting a nametag on your dog because he has never strayed is like not insuring your house because it has never been burgled.


  1. I'm glad he's home! Maybe this will be the needed wake-up call, and they'll have him properly i.d'd now.

  2. Yoshi is a sweetheart. If it weren't for the walking, and the face-licking, and the smell (oh, the smell!), and the poop bags, I'd almost be tempted to get a dog.

    Almost. I really am a cat person at heart.

    I asked the owner to please microchip him, and he agreed. Hopefully he'll actually do it.