Occurred on February 16, 2021 / Irwinton, Georgia, USA
Info from Licensor: "Gumbo was stolen from his owners 2 years ago. The owners searched everywhere, making police reports, contacting rescues, animal shelters posting fliers on social media. They never gave up. I got a call from a deputy who said a man had dropped off a dog to him he met in the middle of the road. He said he didn’t know where he came from had never seen him before and needed help. The deputy opened his back door and gumbo jumped in and lied down. The deputy immediately contacted me asking for help in finding the owners. I am a founding member of a volunteer organization that networks lost and found animals in my county. With no animal control, I lend a hand. For 3 hours the deputy went door to door asking if this was their dog. One house said he showed up and they’ve been feeding him while others had never seen him before. Not giving the full story or claiming him, gumbo came to my house to stay until I could find his owners. Within a few hours, we found out gumbo had taken up at a family home the past year. No vetting, proper identification on gumbo, or identifying marks to claim gumbo reminded unclaimed there also was not a report that gumbo showed up at their house. I had an uneasy feeling and consulted with my partners on the proper protocol. Within minutes gumbos original owners contacted me with vetting records, descriptions of surgical scars, and everything hoping this was their gumbo. Thankfully this was their baby. I remember when he went missing years prior from a post I had seen them make but couldn’t make the connection. Within 15 minutes of the call gumbos owners were at my house to get their boy. Gumbo is so happy to be home and is very healthy. We are certain gumbo was stolen and dumped when whoever realized he was fixed and big sweet boy. Dogfighting is high in our county and dogs are stolen and dumped all the time. He was very well fed by the family who fed him for a year. Gumbo is now reunited with his siblings and family who had mourned his absence for 2 years. This is why I do what I do and advocate for the proper use of microchips, and ID tags on your pet. While also being sure to contact local agencies when finding a lost dog. Gumbo was only 10 minutes away from his home, it just so happens he decided to go wondering that day for the first time in over a year of his disappearance. We still do not know where he was prior to where he was found. Miracles do happen."