By Lauren Gallagher, HSSV Controller and Foster Dog Volunteer
I never knew how much I loved my last HSSV foster dog, Wookie, until he was lost, literally. Four days after he was adopted into his forever home, Wookie bolted out of their slightly open front door, with his leash on. He ran around to the sidewalk on the busy street, and was last seen streaking down the street toward a busy intersection. His new owner immediately contacted me to seek advice and help.
When I heard the news, there was no way I could not go over there and try to look for him. Wookie is a shy dog that strongly bonds to his people, and he may have left to go looking for me. He is afraid of strangers, especially men, so we figured he might be hiding. My husband, the new owner and I walked the neighborhood, calling his name, and searching under bushes with flashlights until midnight, to no avail. The next day, an impromptu search party made up of five staff from HSSV, including me, spread out around their neighborhood and looked for Wookie. We also hung up about 150 Lost Dog flyers and asked people if they have seen him.
While we were out looking for him, it was announced at HSSV that Wookie was lost. The calls, emails and texts came pouring in, everyone wanted to help. We had all bonded to Wookie during his time in foster care, and wanted to do everything we could to help his new owners find him. I went back in the evening to search for him with my two Weimaraners (who are friends with Wookie) and asked them, “Where’s Wookie?” They pulled me all over sniffing bushes, but still to no avail. I went to bed worried about Wookie. I kept having a vision of him running out of the bushes when I called his name. I definitely still had hope. I would look again the next day. Casaundra Cruz, HSSV Regional Rescue & Special Needs Department, had formed another search party, made up of foster dog volunteers, that would join us the next day.
That next morning, I woke up slightly before dawn, and instinctively checked my phone for any news. I had received a text and a voicemail from Wookie’s owner: this could be good news!
I read the text, “He came home! He’s dirty but healthy. I’ll call you in the a.m.”.
My heart jumped and I immediately texted and emailed the update to everyone at HSSV. The news does not get better than that!! Apparently, he scratched on his new family’s door around 1:30 am, and immediately began to play with his new canine family member, L.C. What a smart dog! I am amazed he found his way home after only being there a few days. Wookie knew in his heart that they are his forever family!