Woman Who Lost Dog Finds Him 3 Years Later On TV
Photo: Best Friends Animal Society
Lucy Frausto says the reunion with Dodger felt like an actual dream.

Lucy Frausto from Southern California lost her pit bull, Dodger, three years ago. The playful pup and another dog, called Gigi, vanished from their backyard in 2015. Despite a wide search for the dogs around the neighborhood and across different shelters in the city, Lucy had no luck finding her pets even with help from family and friends. Two months later, Lucy lost hope she'd ever find Dodger and Gigi again.

Lost dog named Dodger
Photo: Danny Bress

Lucy said that losing her dogs had been too painful that she never thought of replacing them. But just recently, Lucy chanced upon a local morning show on TV that featured dogs for adoption. To her surprise, Lucy recognized one of the dogs with its large white head and sweet smiling face. It was Dodger!  And by now the adoption center has named him Butler.

Lucy immediately looked him up at the Best Friend Animal Society's website to check if she's not dreaming or making a mistake about spotting her beloved dog. Comparing old photos of Dodger, Lucy was sure that the dog on TV is her boy.

Pitbull Dodger that Lucy lost
Photo: Best Friends Animal Society

An hour later, Lucy found herself at the shelter in the hopes of taking Dodger back home.

A Year In The Shelter

Dodger has been at the Best Friend Animal Society for over a year. Shelter workers said that he's actually one of their sweetest and well-loved dogs. The pit bull loves taking long walks with the shelter volunteers. After his exercise, he indulges in 15-minute cuddles with the humans who take care of him.

The shelter workers have been wondering why no one would want to take Dodger into their home. A family briefly adopted him but when it became a problem with the landlords, Dodger's new owners had no choice but to return him to Best Friend Animal Society.

Happy dog Dodger
Photo: Danny Bress

Reunited Three Years Later

Hours after Dodger appeared on TV, he was being prepped to return to his original home with Lucy, and when the two were reunited it was as if three years didn't go by. Dodger recognized Lucy right away and he was actually quite eager to hop into her car so that they can drive back home. People who witnessed the reunion remarked that Dodger was just too excited that he knew he’s not going to be living in the shelter anymore.

Reunion with the lost dog Dodger
Photo: Best Friends Animal Society

Following the reunion, the shelter workers checked back on Lucy and Dodger in South California. They weren't surprised to learn that Dodger quickly settled into the very surrounding he grew up in. Lucy said that having Dodger back felt like a dream and it also felt like part of her heart has been restored.

The Importance Of Microchip In Dogs

With Lucy and Dodger’s story, Best Friend Animal Society hopes that pet owners would consider putting a microchip on their dog, the Animal Channel reported. Having a microchip lessens the chances that a family dog would end up in a shelter in case it accidentally escapes from home. It also lessens the chances of a pet becoming a stray on the streets.

I love my adopted dog
Photo: Best Friends Animal Society

The agency also helped Lucy get Dodger's microchip, so she won't have to worry about losing the pit bull all over again.

According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), only 15 percent of missing dogs were found or recovered because it had a tag or microchip. But there are some five to seven million dogs and cats in shelters across the United States. From this number, only 10 to 30 percent of dog owners actually look for their family pet in the shelters.

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Camden Savage is a Phoenix based writer, vegan, cupcake addict and dog lover. Years in the animal rescue trenches have taught her every aspect of dog ownership from behavioral problems, personality and breed specific trait differences of all dogs.