A missing dog was found alive after a three-year journey. Officials estimate the red heeler and husky mix traveled at least 120 miles from his home in Albuquerque, New Mexico to Las Vegas, Nevada. Although Yoshi the dog was underweight, he was found in good health.
Monique Martinez said she adopted Yoshi as a puppy. Although the puppy was secured in her back yard, he managed to escaped while his owner was at school. Martinez said she was heartbroken. She searched the community and asked around. However, nobody had seen her missing dog.
Weeks later, Martinez got some bad news. A neighbor told her that her dog was likely hit by a car. Although she eventually gave up her search, the young woman never forgot her beloved pet.
Three years later, Martinez got a call that would change her life. Officials in Las Vegas captured a stray dog and took him to an animal shelter for assessment. The shelter was able to identify Yoshi as he was implanted with a microchip. The chip provided the shelter with Martinez's name, address, and contact information.
Although the extent of the missing dog's journey will likely remain a mystery, Martinez is happy that her pet managed to survive. As reported by KOAT News, she and the shelter employees credit the microchip for the heartwarming reunion.
Microchipping is a simple and inexpensive procedure that can save a pet's life. As many shelters are overrun with stray animals, euthanization is a harsh reality. However, a majority of shelters and veterinarians check for microchips before authorizing the procedure.
Microchips are available for cats and dogs. The procedure is most often performed in a veterinarian's office, but many pet stores and clinics offer the service, as well. The microchip is inserted into the animal's skin, between their shoulder blades, with a long needle. The procedure is quick and virtually painless.
Unfortunately, the chips cannot track a pet's location as they do not contain a GPS device. They simply store an identification number, which is assigned to the pet's owner.
Microchip companies often provide a website which can be viewed by veterinarians and shelters. The websites also allows pet owners to update the animal's home address, age, photos, and medical concerns.
Watch a video of the reunion HERE.
[Image via Shutterstock]