It’s always heartbreaking when a beloved pet goes missing. But one family in Turkey had a happy ending to their story — and even a funny one.
When the Araç family lost their dog, Leo, they were heartbroken. They looked everywhere for their furry friend but at long last, they had to admit there was no hope.
Then something really odd happened.
One day months later, their son Sertaç took a trip to another town. It was about 60 miles away from where his parents lived — much too far for a dog to travel on his own. Sertaç had planned to spend the day in town doing some work. Instead, he got the surprise of his life.
He couldn’t help but notice a stray dog on the streets, looking tired and dirty.
He was sitting on the street outside a cafe, clearly without an owner. But even though the pup wasn’t in good shape, Sertaç couldn’t stop thinking that he looked exactly like Leo.
“I took a picture and sent it to my mother and father,” said Sertaç. “I was in doubt.”
He knew the odds of the stray being Leo were astronomical.
After all, 60 miles is generally too far for a dog to wander. And what was the chance that he would just happen across him?
But when his parents saw the photo, they had to agree: the resemblance was so uncanny, they had to come to see for themselves. So, they got on the road and met Sertaç in the town.
If there was any doubt this really was their dog, that was laid to rest when his parents arrived and saw him for the first time.
The moment the dog saw them, he rushed toward them, leaping ecstatically into his dad’s arms. He just couldn’t contain his excitement. They might not have immediately recognized Leo, but Leo recognized them.
The poor dog had endured long months on the street, separated from his family, hungry and alone. Now, they are all together again and they’re so grateful to have found one another.
Unfortunately, around the time that Leo went missing, the Araç family also lost their two other dogs.
The timing is too much to be a coincidence, so, sadly, evidence points to the work of a dognapper in their region. But after the miraculous recovery of Leo, the family isn’t giving up hope.
“We’re so happy Leo is home. I will look carefully everywhere I visit in hopes we find [the other two dogs],” said Sertaç. “My father and mother will continue to search as long as they can because they see them as their sons and love them.”
Sadly, pet kidnapping is on the rise.
The family is luckier than they might realize — on average, only about 10 percent of people whose pets are kidnapped ever see them again. It’s important to supervise your pets and make sure they’re secured when in the yard.
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