This past weekend was full of ups and downs. We had two cases we worked. One with a happy ending … and won with a devastating ending … but let’s start with a very happy ending.
Chuchella is a 10 mo old GSD. He is gorgeous. And terrified. He had literally been bought later in the afternoon on Friday, in Milwaukee, by a family from Chicago. Then they got a flat tire on the interstate and were towed to the Ives Grove Park & Ride. When the state trooper saw the gorgeous dog in the back, he asked if he could get a picture of him. Who could resist? I know I couldn’t! The new owners rolled the window down and … POOF! Chuchella was out that window and on his way across Hwy 20 to the Ives Grove Golf Course!
Ives Grove Golf Course owner, Pete, the trooper, and the new owners were on the chase! What you need to remember is that Chuchella didn’t know ANY of these people! So, the new owners reached out to the people that sold him to them and they came down to look too, thankfully! Chuchella gave them all a run for their money on Hwy 20 and in the golf course. Sheriff’s Deputies and the new owners were looking well into the night, till around 1am. The Sheriff’s Deputy was going to the nearby kennels, farms, and houses leaving word of the missing pup and trying to get a lead. But nothing. The owners, past and present, had similar bad luck. And the new owners had to get their damaged vehicle and kids home to Chicago. So, we got on the case early Saturday.
All day Saturday we searched. Pete allowed us to use a golf cart to go around the permiter and even announced to those on a golf outing about the missing pup. Everyone was looking. About a couple hours of searching the course, we got a tip. Chuchella was seen in a field, on the West side of the course, going towards to the kennels! Thank God he was West and not on the East side by the interstate! So, we drove … and drove … and drove. We stopped at every house on the road to the West, 51st Dr. We spoke to anyone we could and left our number. No one had seen him. No tips came in. And then another case came in on the far Northeast corner of the county. You can read Delilah’s story in the following post, titled Angel Delilah.
Later Saturday, there were several people out looking for a sign of Chuchella. But there was nothing. Absolutely nothing. And they searched well after dark.
Sunday morning, a call came in from the golf course. Chuchella was seen by Pete in the NW most corner of the course on a mound! But he ran West down Spring St on the Northern side of the road! Crap … where did he run to then?
We drove and drove, checked in at a couple houses and tried others we couldn’t reach people at the day before. Most were gone or not answering. We had dog catchers, the breeder, and volunteers all searching in cars and on foot. Tracking and searching. Searching and tracking. After about two hours after his sighting, I was at a house across Spring St from where he ran out of the golf course. I always keep my eyes on areas he might be so I had my back to the house I knocked at and had a card in my hand with my number on it. The lady answered and had to ask me …. Hello??? Because I was watching Chuchella at the corner of exactly the point of the golf course and field where he ran from that morning! THERE HE WAS!!!! I told the lady, “I’m looking for a dog … but there he is!” She tells me, “Go, G.o, Go!” And i ran to my car. I had to keep my eyes on him but not approach. He’d run. We were on a group text for updates so I texted telling everyone exactly where he was and told the seller to get there asap! And the wife did. She was there in less than a minute. Other volunteers were there, one shaking a canister of food, and others sitting on the road for traffic control and to watch it unfold. The seller slowly walked into the field and softly called him to her. He looked at her and was like, “Could it be? Is it really you?” He walked towards her very slowly, sniffing the air and cautiously stopping and then coming even closer. It seemed like forever, but he finally made it to her and she grabbed his collar!
SHE HAD HIM!!!! OMG … everyone just started screaming with joy!!! The husband of the seller pair was coming into view, as he was walking with another one of the dogs that Chuchella knew. OMG, she really had him! We got a leash out to her right away and she just sat there holding him and letting him decompress a little. I called the new owner and told them the seller had him and we’d wait for him to get here, from Chicago! So, they waited at the park & ride where he ran from for hours. And the new owner came and got their beautiful new family member, again!
I was on the phone with the new owner once they got to the park & ride, I told them I was taken away from the waiting area by another case, Delilah, but that the seller was there waiting for him. He got out of the car when he saw them and forgot to hang up …. which I did not mind while I listened to the reunion and tips we agreed the new owner needed were shared. Chuchella was truly attached to his seller. It was going to be very hard on him to leave. He needed a Martingale collar, a taller fence and/or lead in yard for a long time until he adjusted to his new home and family. I was still on the phone while i trekked through woods looking for Delilah. And the new owner’s young son was in the car waiting for Daddy. He kept asking for Daddy to stay with him. So, I talked to this darling little man while Daddy got the new dog.
After about five minutes, Daddy came back in the car with their new doggie. And away they went to Chicago.
A very happy ending for a very scary case!
*** PLEASE NOTE: …. THERE IS ONLY ONE REASON WE GOT CHUCHELLA, it is because WE didn’t chase him down! He didn’t know us. We knew the seller was the only chance to get him. We had to practice restraint and let them do the coaxing! YOU NEVER CHASE A DOG THAT IS LOOSE!!!! EVER! Let the owner come coax them back!