Chasing ‘misplaced’ pets – Winnipeg Free Press

Happy Monday!

We were on our morning walk the other day when a couple of men in an SUV (one behind the wheel, the other perched in the back seat) pulled over to the side of the road.

“Excuse me! Did you see a black doodle?” the agitated driver asked.

At that point, I hadn’t and told them I would keep my eyes open for it.

The driver thanked me, pulled a quick U-turn, and headed back south down Rothesay Street in search of the wayward pooch.

Less than two minutes later, I caught sight of the mid-sized pooch. He was running full-tilt from a nearby tony housing development into an adjacent open field.

I sprinted in the same direction it was headed and called out as it turned toward me. When it neared, I crouched and offered treats, but just then Oliver and Guapo, my rambunctious fur brothers from different mothers, tugged on their leashes and barked, making the poor thing even more anxious than it already was.

It took off south down Rothesay Street, darting in and out of slow-moving morning traffic until I couldn’t see it anymore.

Now, I’ve “misplaced” my fair share of animals — mainly a pair of short-legged basset hounds that routinely broke free through unlatched gates or wandered out of open front doors — and have also turned to neighbours, or strangers, to track them down.

The bassets, Polka Dot and Dooley, usually ended up in a good samaritan’s backyard, or in the back of an Animal Services van headed straight to the dog pound.

One time, I was told the slobbery duo spent the night snuggled up in bed with a dog-loving couple who found them wandering the streets in East Kildonan.

Polka Dot and Dooley. (Supplied)

No word of a lie.

Dogs, and cats, go missing. Unfortunately, It happens all the time.

Most of the time they turn up, safe and sound.

Nevertheless, I gave a description of the vehicle the men were driving to a concerned dog walker who was following the lost dog’s trail. And when I ran into a man who was reporting the loose canine to city services, I repeated the colour and model of the car for him too.

I may never know whether the pooch was ever found, but these descriptive details proved successful months earlier when a neighbour pulled up beside me in her SUV and asked if I knew who the dog in her “trunk” belonged to.

I peeked through the vehicle’s back window and saw a brown, long-haired terrier cross sprawled out on a blanket and told her I didn’t recognize it.

Seconds after she drove off, a man in a red sedan approached and asked if I had seen a small brown dog wandering around.

“He’s in the back of a white SUV and the driver is looking for you,” I told him, before sending him on a wild goose chase.

Half an hour later, the driver of the red sedan drove up to the curb.

“Did you find him?” I asked as the man rolled down his window.

He nodded to the back seat, where the scruffy ball of fun was stretched out, seemingly oblivious to the chaos that has just ensued.

“Thanks for your help,” he said.

Have a great week!

Leesa Dahl

Chasing ‘misplaced’ pets