You ever go through a time in your life that was so emotionally draining that you almost don’t even want to talk about it? That’s how I feel about what happened a couple of weeks ago. We had left our house early Sunday morning to take a 5 day road trip in Michigan… a couple of days at Traverse City followed by a couple of days at Mackinaw City and Mackinaw Island.
On the way to Traverse City we had stopped in Mears, Michigan to ride some dune buggies at the Silver Lake Sand Dunes. The kids had a blast and it really was a lot of fun.
Here is some video…
After we left the dunes we traveled towards Traverse City. Just as we entered into the city I got a phone call from our house/dog sitter that our Yorkie Tori had got out of our yard and they couldn’t catch her. She was literally clear across our subdivision where she has never gone before. Tori doesn’t leave the yard when she gets out. She wanders maybe a house or two away, but she always stays nearby. She does go crazy whenever I leave the house so she has had separation anxiety issues I suppose. Right away I panicked because I know she was just trying to find Ken and I. I’ve never felt so helpless before. I mean what could we do since we were 5 hours away from home?
After about 20 minutes I called them back and was told that she had traveled even farther away from home and had crossed a main road. That was it for me, we turned the car around and headed back home. We ended up calling so many people asking for them to come to our neighborhood and help search for Tori. There were many people searching from about 6:30pm until dark. By the time we had arrived home at 11:30 everyone except my parents had gone home. Ken, Andrew and I had searched the area where she was last seen for 2 hours without any luck. Ken got lost in the woods at one point, fell into a hole and his legs were all scratched up and bleeding. Andrew and I had someone nearly run into us as I was driving about 5mph on the opposite side of the road and then the person ended up turning their car around and going after us. It was a surreal night for sure.
The next morning Ken got up and searched for several hours. I made up a flyer and we got hundreds of copies. I posted her info on so many websites and facebook pages it was crazy. My girlfriend came over and helped us look, including in ditches in stuff. It was sad, but also a reality that she could have gotten hit by a car and was laying somewhere dead. So many thoughts were going through my head. There are coyotes in the woods near here, among who knows what else that could have gotten ahold of a small 8 pound dog. We put flyers in 3 different subdivisions near where she was last seen. We stopped every person we seen outside to ask if they had seen her and to please contact us if they do. Problem was I knew that she would not approach anyone. She is not like our other 3 dogs. They would go up to anyone, tail wagging, looking for attention. Tori is the exact opposite, except with us of course.
Around 7 that evening someone had said they seen a black dog like 2 miles away from our house. We were unsure that she would have traveled that far, but just in case we scoured that entire area for the next 3 hours with several people helping. The feeling that there was no way she was going to be found at this point kept getting stronger and stronger. I felt so sick going to bed that night. After an entire day of searching I felt defeated.
The next morning Ken got up early once again and started looking. He got more copies of the flyer and as he was driving around trying to give them to people and they were saying that they had already seen the flyer at the gas station, the YMCA, or they seen it on Facebook. The word was out. So many people were looking and trying to help us find her. Around 10:30 that morning I felt like I was losing my mind and I begged Ken to just come home so we could just move forward with the next stage. Grieving her loss and hoping that someone had found her and decided to just keep her. He came home for a bit, but after a couple of hours he said he couldn’t just sit there and he wasn’t ready to give up. I ended up going with him and we were in the area 2 miles from our house where someone had said they thought they seen her the night before.
Two hours had gone by and Ken had said that if only someone would call us and say that they had seen her recently that would be so helpful. There were just so many places to look. Around 3:30 I got a phone call to my cell that someone in the subdivision where we had left flyers in their mailboxes had seen her. At first I thought she was going to say she seen her last night or that morning. She was telling me that she seen her near a creek and she tried to cross a busy road, but then a car and motorcycle had to stop and she got scared and ran back to the creek. They were calling her name and they couldn’t find her. When I asked how long ago and she replied just like 5 minutes ago I quickly pointed for Ken to drive in that direction. He went through a red light and passed a car where he shouldn’t have.
We got out of the car near the creek and started yelling out her name. We were walking in people’s backyards that were along the busy road where she had tried to cross. I kept walking and yelling her name hoping to see her come out of the trees along the creek. Something made me look back towards the busy road and there she was walking along someone’s driveway coming towards me. It was such an unbelievable moment. At first I think I thought I was seeing things. I mean after two days of searching in yard after yard for her and envisioning what it would look like if she did come running across someone’s yard, once I seen it happening for real, it almost didn’t feel real.
It was a moment I will never forget. To think that she survived three days and two nights is unbelievable to me. A miracle without a doubt. I don’t think Ken and I have cried so many tears of joy before. My hubby is in love with our dogs probably more than anyone in our house. I know people joke here is this big guy with this little furry dogs, but that’s my man. He is the best :)
She has been spoiled like crazy since then. It took her awhile to finally walk on the grass, she kept staying on the concrete for some reason. She checked out just fine at the vets, but I did have to shave a lot of her fur because it was filled with burrs. She was stinky and dirty to say the least. I still wonder where she might have been the entire time, if she slept or ate anything. What is crazy is she was exactly 1 mile from our home very close to the area where she was last seen on Sunday night and so many people had searched that area from the first day on. Yelling her name over and over again. I just can’t imagine what she must have thought the entire time. Obviously the people who thought they seen her several miles from our house were seeing the wrong dog or something. Anyways, we are blessed beyond belief to have gotten her back. And thank God the woman who seen her had our flyer and called us right away. We offered her a reward and she didn’t want anything. Such a sweet lady!
Unfortunately we didn’t get to enjoy our little vacation and we have no other time this summer to try and go again. Our crazy busy football and cheer schedule has started up and our month is in full swing. Things happen and you do what you have to do for those you love, even your pets!