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Of Microchips and Names

Yesterday, we got a phone call from somebody down in Utah County (the county to the south of Salt Lake County where we live) saying that they’d found a dog running on the streets with our nametag on him and/or our microchip in him (I got confused over which it was…it changed a couple of times as I eavesdropped on Barbara talking to them on the phone). The dog’s name is Sonny.

Well, a couple of months ago, we placed a rescue with a family who lives near downtown Salt Lake City and they promptly renamed him Sonny. And, just as promptly, let him get loose. We discovered this because a veterinarian called us and said that some people brought this Sheltie found running loose into the clinic. When they scanned him, the chip traced back to us, so they called us. Two days later(!), the family called us to say that Sonny was missing and they can’t find him anywhere. We pretended not to know anything (although Sonny was in our house at the time) and let them suffer a little bit for violating out contract — which says clearly that they must notify us within 24 hours of the dog getting lost.

Anyway, it all worked out and we returned Sonny to them.

So, perhaps we can be forgiven for instantly assuming that this same Sonny had been found down in Utah County. However, Barbara did some quick legwork, combining information from our not-quite-fully-organized files and other data sources, and figured out that this Sonny was a Collie that had been placed by Collie Rescue , but with a microchip that we’d inserted and, perhaps, our collar tag. She quickly confirmed that fact with Cynthia (who runs Collie Rescue), but concurrently got one of Sheltie Rescue’s board members (Cindy Wilkinson, accompanied by her husband and her daughter Shanna) to "volunteer" to drive down to retrieve the dog.

But Barbara didn’t stop there. Through Cynthia, she got the contact information for the family who had adopted Sonny and phoned them. They didn’t even know the dog was gone. Turned out that the kids had taken Sonny out in the backyard to play and he’d slipped out through a brand new hole in their fence that a windstorm had opened up the night before. So, we called Cindy on her cell phone, just as she’d gotten back on the freeway, apparently, and got her to pull over and call the family to see about meeting her and retrieving their dog.

And it worked! The family made a donation to Sheltie Rescue for the trouble (and gas money, etc.). And we recovered another lost dog, even before they knew he was lost!

Now, if only people would get more creative with their dog names…

On this day..

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