June the dog.
Julie Nguyen and Jacob Thomas of Mobile, Alabama both dearly love their 1-year-old mix breed dog, June. So much, even, that they were willing to drive 1,100 miles to Dodge City to retrieve their venturous pup after 12 days of searching for her.
It all began on June 15 when a taunting cat got the best of June’s self-control.
“She actually chewed through the wooden fence gate and pulled away a metal barrier that we put up as reinforcement, so it wasn't as if we didn't try to keep her from breaking loose,” said Nguyen. “She's just an energetic and smart little girl. If she's determined enough, she'll find a way out.”
And that she did — to chase a cat, according to her owners, whose assumption was based off of the telltale footprints that remained on the outside trash can.
Somehow, June miraculously ended up 2 hours from her home in Mobile, where she would set off on her next adventure. Unfortunately, due to a recent rain storm, June was not wearing her tags because she had just been bathed and was supposed to get another bath later that evening, according to Nguyen.
“There were two boys coming from Florida, they lived in Kansas and I believe they live in Dodge City,” said Dodge City Veterinary clinic receptionist, Brittany Beers. “When they were coming from Florida, they saw little June on the side of the road, and she was a couple hours from where she lived. They thought she was just a little abandoned puppy on the side of the road, so they picked her up.”
After falling in love with June’s sweet personality, the two boys decided that they wanted to keep June as a pet, so she tagged along for the rest of their road trip.
“They ended up bringing her in to our clinic to get a checkup,” said Beers. “We scanned her to see if she had a microchip, and sure enough she did, and that gave us the information to call June’s actual owners.”
June stayed at the Dodge City Veterinary Clinic for roughly 5 days, where Beers says she got plenty of love and food before reuniting with her owners
“The owners were so excited to see June, it was a very emotional experience full of happy tears,” said Beers. “For them, it was a very long road trip. They had an adventure on the way back and took plenty of pictures and got to explore some things instead of just riding in the car the whole way back.”
June is now home and safe in Mobile. According to her owners, they feel that she won’t attempt another breakout anytime soon.
“After her little adventure, she actually hasn't shown much interest in breaking out again,” said Nguyen. “She's been content just sitting inside — I suppose she missed us too!”
After this story went viral on the internet, the two boys who picked June up began receiving backlash for “dog-napping” her. Nguyen expressed her feelings towards these boys, stating that she and Thomas both don’t hold any hard feelings towards them.
“We appreciate that they were good people to take June along for their summer adventure and responsible enough to have her checked out by a vet,” she said. “We're very understanding that kids really don't have the foresight to take a ‘stray dog’ to a local vet or shelter to get checked. I've read a few comments putting them in a negative light, and it shouldn't be that way.”
Nguyen and Thomas both expressed appreciation toward the Dodge City Veterinary Clinic and the hospitality they showed June.
“We sure do appreciate the nice people in Dodge City. We didn't expect such a reception from June's adventure,” said Nguyen. “Everyone needs to know that the Dodge City Veterinary Clinic is the absolute best — we love and appreciate them so much!”
Beers encourages the Dodge City community to take June’s story as a reason to get your pet microchipped, as it was the only reason June is now safe at home.
“We’ve had so many cases where animals will get lost, and sometimes they’re so far away from home that we don’t know that we don’t know who to contact,” said Beers. “For instance, a truck driver who lived in California was driving and her dog got out here in Dodge City. They brought her into the clinic and scanned her for a microchip, and we ended up calling her owner in California who was devastated that she couldn’t find her dog. Well, they were reunited just like June and her owners.”
According to Beers, cases like this happen in Dodge City at least 10 times a year.
“The local animal shelter is good about microchipping,” said Beers. “Anytime a dog is found or picked up, the shelter microchips them, that way if that animal is lost again then we can scan them for a microchip so they have a record of who the dog belongs to. It’s very important, unfortunately it’s not a GPS but it gives us enough information to re-home animals.”
For more information on microchipping, contact the Dodge City Veterinary Clinic at 620-227-8651.
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