Last week a friend of mine lost her dog for almost 24 hours. Initially we were sure she'd be back or we'd find her any minute, but as time went on without even a sighting we started to think the worst.
It was a horrible experience for my friends and those of us who cared for Dixie and her owners. But the most amazing thing was just how many people came out in 30 degree weather after dark for hours to help look in the fields and woods surrounding the area where Dixie was last seen. Not only did friends come out to help, but people who were only casual acquaintances also showed up.
Those of us who love our dogs and think of them as our family members can understand just how devastating it would be to lose one and not know if she'd dead or alive, injured, frightened, cold or stolen. We can all relate to how chilling it would be to face the fact that your dog might never be found alive, or might never be found at all. And the uncertainty would be even worse than finding that your dog had died.
Luckily Dixie did come back the following afternoon. She was cold, frightened, scratched up and dehydrated after a night in the woods. We will never know where she was or what she was doing during the time she was missing, but it's a miracle to have her back safe. And knowing that so many people care enough to help a fellow dog owner in a time when they are in need is another miracle.