There’s nothing worse than when a pet goes missing. You look everywhere, hoping your friend will return to you, but after a certain point you begin to lose hope.
Six years ago, a woman named Sandra Campos was devastated when her pug, Chato, went missing. She looked everywhere, but found no sign of the dog. Sandra was homeless at the time, and Chato was her beloved companion.
“I kept putting flyers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, anywhere I could get people’s attention,” Sandra told ABC 10. “He was part of the family. He was part of me.”
Years passed, and it seemed impossible that Chato would ever be found. Sandra moved away to New Mexico for family, but deep down never gave up hope she’d see her dog again.
And on November 21, 2020—six long years after her dog went missing—a stray pug was found on the side of the highway in Sacramento, California.
It was Chato!
Vets found a microchip and even after all this time were able to identify Sandra as the owner. Luckily, Sandra didn’t change her phone number during her move, still hoping someday she’d hear good news about her dog.
That call finally came: “I just started to cry, I was so excited, because I never gave up hope on my pug,” Sandra said.
After being found, Chato was taken in by Front Street Animal Shelter, who also couldn’t believe they were able to find the owner after so long.
“Statistically in shelters, less than one out of three dogs and less than one out of ten cats is ever picked up by their owner, so it’s a great story and a Thanksgiving miracle for Chato,” Ryan Hindermann from the shelter told ABC 10.
“It’s such a heartwarming experience. I’ve never had this big of a tug on the heart,” said volunteer Erica Vasquez.
Now, the shelter is preparing to deliver a holiday miracle. Because Sandra moved to New Mexico, she is a 17-hour drive away. But volunteers from the shelter have agreed to drive Chato all the way there to reunite the old friends in time for Thanksgiving.
They’ll get to celebrate the holidays together—and make up for years of lost time.
“I don’t have anything under my Christmas tree,” Sandra said. “All I want is my dog under the tree.”
We’re so glad that Chato was found and will reunite with his owner for the holidays! It’s a reminder to never give up hope on finding your pet.
But it is also a reminder to get your pets microchipped! It’s free, painless and helps countless owners find their lost pets!
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