Muffy’s Mysterious Mileage

If you've ever lost a dog you know how devastating it is. This story proves no matter how much time has passed there's always hope...

If you’ve ever lost a dog you know how devastating it is. This story proves no matter how much time has passed there’s always hope for a happy ending.

SYDNEY – Nine years after vanishing from outside her Australian family’s home, Muffy the dog was found alive and well this month in another backyard – 1,200 miles away – officials said Thursday.

Inspectors with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals were investigating a possible animal cruelty case at a home in the southern city of Melbourne two weeks ago when they found the fluffy white mutt sleeping outside on a scrap of cardboard, Victoria state RSPCA spokesman Tim Pilgrim said.

A microchip in Muffy’s neck identified her owners, and, after a few days of searching for a current phone number, officials tracked down Natalie Lampard, who hadn’t seen Muffy since the pooch disappeared from her backyard in the eastern city of Brisbane nine years ago.

“When the RSPCA described her, I told them her name; I knew immediately it was our Muffy,” Lampard said. “It was totally out of the blue – after nine years, I thought she was long gone.”

The owners of the Melbourne house where Muffy was discovered said they found the dog about a year ago wandering along a street, Pilgrim said. But where had Muffy spent the previous eight years? And how did she get all the way to Melbourne – about 1,200 miles (2,000 kilometers) from Brisbane?

“Nobody knows,” Pilgrim said. “The mystery continues for old Muffy.”

Muffy is being treated by the RSPCA for a severe allergic reaction to fleas, shortly she should be well enough to be flown back home. What a reunion that’s going to be.

* Photo courtesy AP Associated Press

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