In what can only be described as a real-life “Homeward Bound,” a dog who went missing 10 years ago has been reunited with her family after more than a decade apart.
In 2008, Debra Suierveld and her children had been playing with their black Lab mix Abby outside their home in Apollo, Pennsylvania, when the one-year-old dog wandered off. Despite an extensive search, Abby was never found. After grieving the loss, the Suiervelds accepted that Abby was gone forever and had the dog declared dead.
Fast forward to January 2018 when Suierveld received a call from a local animal shelter, informing her that it had found the family’s dog.
“They said, ‘We have your dog,'” Suierveld recounted. “And I said, ‘That’s impossible.'”
Since her two current dogs were safe at home, Suierveld thought that the animal control officer was mistaken. That is, until they told her the dog’s name: Abby.
“I was, like, ‘Abby?’ I said, ‘I haven’t seen her for 10 years,” said the pet owner. “So I was pretty shocked.”
Where Had Abby The Dog Been This Whole Time?
The dog had been found by a good Samaritan only eight miles away from the location where she had originally gone missing. Upon arrival at the animal shelter, Abby’s HomeAgain microchip was scanned, revealing Suierveld’s contact information.
According to the shelter’s medical manager, Jody Berisko, Abby was likely taken care of by someone else during the years of her disappearance.
“She was in very good shape,” said Berisko. “She’s happy. She’s a good weight. She’s very well taken care of.”
How Abby Is Doing Now
Although Abby is now an elderly dog, the black Lab reportedly answers to her name and has quickly re-acclimated herself to family life.
“She settled right it, I’d say,” said Suierveld. “The first night, I have other dogs, and they were all lying in the family room like they’d been spending the last few years together.”
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Abby even remembers some of the tricks that Suierveld’s daughter Carly taught her as a puppy. In fact, when Suierveld called to tell her now 22-year-old daughter that Abby had been found, the college student, cried tears of joy.
“We thought she had passed away,” said Suierveld. “It feels like a part of my kids’ childhood is back, part of our family is back. It’s pretty awesome.”
Welcome home, Abby!