Tabby takes off

Cross-country traveling dog finds her way back home

Tabby the dogJeanine and Peter eagerly await seeing her. They've agonized for 14 months, driven countless hours looking for her, and have traveled all the way from Kentucky to HSHV hoping we have their long lost dog.

We do. It is.

Tabby, a small German Shepherd mix, enters, with her tail on super-wag-mode.

"This is the liveliest I've seen her since she's been here!" says HSHV staff member Toni.

Tabby starts coo-ing, and lies down to get her belly rubbed and bum scratched by Jeanine, who begins to smother her with kisses.

"You silly girl (muah) - you look the same, only skinnier! (muah, muah, muah) You've lost a lot of weight. You need a spa day!" 

Her tail is non-stop wagging. Having been on a year-long cross-country adventure, Tabby, originally adopted from a shelter in California, looks happy to be reunited with her family.

In February of last year, the human family plus their four cats and three dogs moved from California to a place in Kentucky with 100+ acres. The first day in their new home, Tabby, enjoying the new space, enthusiastically lept off the front porch, breaking her front leg. Undeterred by this, a few days later, bandaged up Tabby and doggie sibling Thunder escaped through the fence. Though Thunder returned 45 minutes later, Tabby didn't.

Tabby the dogJeanine and Peter searched for Tabby for weeks on end. They happened upon an abandoned tick-covered pup, whom they rescued and still have today. "Tick," a German Shorthaired Pointer, is now a PTSD support dog for veteran Peter. They kept searching. But still no Tabby. Eventually, they came to the sad conclusion that she was gone for good, perhaps found by a hungry bear.

So when a former co-worker contacted Jeanine through Facebook saying he thought a shelter in Ann Arbor, Michigan had their dog, she was thrilled.

"Does she have a black spotted tongue? Is her tongue way too big for her mouth?" Jeanine asked the HSHV staff.

She did. It was. And so Jeanine and Peter hopped in their truck and made the seven-hour drive to HSHV.

"There was no way we would not get her. She's my child. We wouldn't leave her any more than we'd leave a human child," Jeanine says, Peter nodding.

Jeanine shows a photo of Tabby on her phone.

"See? This is her. I never took it off my phone.  She was a lot fatter. We need to put some weight on you."

Jeanine and Peter immediately begin discussing what they're going to feed her, how their grandchildren are going to love her, and how happy they are that they have their dog back. And from the tail-wagging look of it, the overwhelming love is mutual.

Tabby the dog




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All images and photographs are courtesy of HSHV staff and Jeffrey E. Roush of Two Cat Studios.