The last 48 hours have been a blur. What started as a normal day, quickly turned into a crisis.
I came home from the doctor’s office, and my dog Cali didn’t greet me like she normally does. Typically as I’m unlocking the door I can hear her whimper and scratch, doing everything she can to grab my attention to say hello. Yesterday, it was just silent. When I opened the door and didn’t hear the scurry of her little paws, I just assumed she was accidentally locked in a room. We did have housekeepers that worked that morning, and sometimes if they make loud noises, she will hang out in another room until they are done. I opened every door, every closet, and there was no sign of her. I called her name, no response. My heart fell to the floor.
I quickly called my housekeeper and they confirmed my dog was in the house. Then I started to think the worse. Maybe she ingested some cleaning solution and she’s sick? Maybe she’s passed out in the house? I began pulling everything out of closets, pushing beds over, moving couches. A house that was once clean now looks like someone burglarized it as I was searching for her. Still, no Cali.
In tears, I call Sterling and tell him “Something bad has happened, Cali is gone!” He quickly drops what he’s doing and came home to help search. We drive through the neighborhood, screaming. The owner of the maid service came and helped us search. We are doing everything in our power to find Cali. At one point, I even call the Police Department because maybe they would have called about a loose dog. I was told by the lovely dispatcher to go to the CMPD Shelter and see if she was dropped off.
It was a long 20-minute drive to the shelter. On the way, I called my mom in tears trying to see if she had any tips on how to locate a lost dog. Meanwhile, back at home, Sterling was going door to door, trying to find any neighbor that may know where Cali was the last scene
When I arrived at the shelter, I was surprised at how many people were there. It was 2 p.m. and there were 10 people in front of me, either surrendering their dogs or looking for their lost dog. I sat and patiently waited. In my head, I kept thinking that every minute I’m waiting in this line, that’s another minute that I could be using to search for Cali. While waiting in line I got the idea to reach out to North Meck Animal Rescue which is who I originally adopted Cali from. I got a text from Sterling with a screenshot of the Nextdoor app with a “found dog” ad that looked like Cali and then immediately after that I got a text message from North Meck Animal Rescue that says “We have her.”
My heart fell to the floor. In tears, I quickly left CMPD and drove straight to NODA where North Meck Animal Rescue is headquartered to pick up my girl. It’s amazing how, through the help of neighbors and animal rescue, we were able to find the dog at pretty much the same time. It’s like all the stars aligned.
When I arrived at North Meck Animal Rescue, Cali is excited to see me, clawing at the cage trying to get to me. Her appearance made my heartbreak. She was covered in mud, her hair looked matted and unkempt. She smelled horrible. You would have thought this dog was in the wild for months, but no, it was only 4 hours. She immediately jumped into my arms, and in the process of trying to lick my face, she scratched it from my eyelid to my chin. I didn’t care, I was just happy to have her.
While driving back home, I called the person that saved my dog’s life. Hope. While driving around Central Avenue, she saw my dog almost get hit by an F150 in a major 4 lane intersection. She quickly lured Cali into her car, and then took her to Monroe Road Animal Hospital where she was checked out and North Meck Animal Rescue came to pick her up.
I am so thankful that Hope stopped to save my dog. Cali is so scared of loud noises and cars. She hates the cold. She is a very “at-home” dog. I can only imagine how scared she was trying to find her way home and Hope saved her. I truly believe that if Hope didn’t pick her up, Cali would be gone, forever.
We took Cali home, bathed her, where she drank a lot of water and laid in the bed all day. She hasn’t left the bed since we found her. She’s exhausted. It’s almost like she’s depressed or traumatized. Which so would I if I couldn’t find my way home for hours on end. We determined through our security camera’s that our housekeepers left the door open for an extended period where Cali wandered out. That evening, the housekeepers were fired. The part that makes me angry is that the housekeepers weren’t even apologetic. They just kept thanking me for letting them know. I’m not going to be getting over their actions anytime soon, however, I’m just so thankful for Hope, and being able to hug my dog every day now.