SWANSEA (CBS) — It was a happy homecoming for a dog that went missing in Florida, only to turn up in Massachusetts. But the mystery remains–how did he get here?
Apollo’s owner thought she’d never see him again, but thanks to technology and the kindness of strangers, he’s home.
“I live 5 minutes away, so it didn’t take me long to get there,” says Lisa White, an animal control officer in the town of Swansea.
She found Apollo after getting a call about a dog on the loose.
“He was in the parking lot off the road, barking, tail between his legs, looking scared,” she said.
But where was Apollo’s home?
Lisa routinely checks lost dogs for an implanted microchip using a wand type device. If the pet has a chip, identifying information comes up.
Apollo had a chip.
“They gave us the owner information that came back as Jacksonville, Florida,” White said.
She contacted the dog’s owner who was overjoyed, but didn’t have the money to bring Apollo home.
That’s when East Coast Paws, a volunteer organization that transports dogs like Apollo, got involved.
“They should get a lot of credit,” said White. “They worked hard to get him home.”
About 20 drivers in a kind of relay took the dog 1100 miles to Jacksonville, where he was met with a joyful reunion.
“I had no words,” said Cynthia Abercrombie, Apollo’s owner. “All I could do was cry.”
She believes Apollo was stolen, and thought he was gone for good.
“I was shocked. I was speechless. I had no idea that he would ever be that far away from home,” she said.
The kindness of strangers indeed–along with a microchip–saved the day.
“She did everything right,” White said. “She had her pet microchipped. She kept all her information current, and that’s why she got her dog back.”
Apollo was missing for about a month. He lost some weight, but other than that is in good shape.