OnFocus – When a beloved pet goes missing, it often takes a community effort to bring them home again. This was the case with Peaches, a young recently-rescued dog who went missing on October 17 near West 5th and Oak Avenue in Marshfield after slipping out the door while groceries were being brought inside.
“When Peaches ran away we did not know where to start looking,” said Kaila Pralle-Burr, Peaches’ owner. “We searched our neighborhood for hours with no luck.”
A friend put Burr in contact with Megan Jasurda, a volunteer with MAPS who assists in lost or homeless pet cases when able. Given Peaches’ nervousness and the upcoming cold weather, Jasurda knew it was important to locate her quickly.
“I posted her on the MAPS Facebook page to help get sighting reports. Soon after, a private message came through of a scared and small white dog on the run which was on Veterans Parkway’s overpass near Peach Ave,” said Jasurda. “I quickly arrived and eventually spotted the roaming dog which had a red collar on, confirming it was Peaches. Owners & their friends were all there trying to locate her. After some time, we realized that probably nothing but a humane live trap would get her.”
The following day, there were a number of sightings which continued to help point owners in the right direction. Jasurda, who has worked on a number of dog rescue cases, coordinated with the family to place food and familiar scented items that would attract Peaches.
“On Sunday evening, she eventually settled in an area behind the senior high, but we still couldn’t fully locate & trap her,” said Jasurda.
Then on early Monday morning, Peaches was found sleeping by her items that were placed – miles away from her home but near an area with recent sightings.
“We then realized she was just too big for a regular small humane live trap! My husband
was able to quickly bring the larger humane live trap and she was safely captured within 30 minutes!” said Jasurda. “Sighting reports are key to helping owners and volunteers to get scared and lost animal to safety as quickly as possible.”
Jasurda encourages people who spot a roaming dog to report them to Marshfield Area Pet Shelter, as it could be a dog she is hoping to locate and reunite with family.
Peaches’ family was overjoyed to have their beloved pup back home safe.
“I am so grateful!” said Burr. “We would have never been able to do this without Megan’s help. She helped us track Peaches, gave us tips to keep her in the areas she was last sighted in, and helped to give us hope that Peaches would be found.”
“I’m very happy Peaches is safe and that her sprinting in fear is over,” said Jasurda. “Her family did an incredible job in tracking, staying with and/or ahead of her. It’s time for some good rest for her & her family! Thank you to all involved!”
“It’s so hard to be patient and not pursue or chase your dog when you know they are out there somewhere,” added Burr. “If I learned one thing from this experience, it’s that you just have to have faith and to be smart and creative to make sure your pet is safe in a not-so-ideal situation.”
She added that social media is also a significant help.
“In one night, I think we had 500 shares on Facebook to help find Peaches,” she said. “This helped us immensely with reported sightings! Thank you to Megan, MAPS, and the community for helping us bring Peaches home!”
Jasurda encourages all pet owners to have their pet microchipped, as 1 out of every 3 pets will go missing at some point during their lifetime. Learn more.
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