Bridget was missing. It was Tuesday morning and Ann had her out for her regular morning stroll through the park. Bridget decided that Tuesday was the day to go AWOL. She had done this before but has always turned up nearby within a short period of time.
Today would be different. There was no sign of Bridget. There were early sightings of her in her favourite neighbourhood but as time went on there was no news. No phone calls saying someone had found her…nothing.
Ann spent the day doing what every dog owner does. Trying not to panic, contacting animal services, the local veterinarian, other dog owners, and walking the neighbourhood calling for Bridget.
I stopped by to see Ann on my way home from work to see if there was any news on Bridget. Bridget went AWOL at 10am and was still missing at 5:30pm. You could see the worry in Ann’s eyes. She was concerned that Bridget had gone further afield than in her previous adventures. I called Raymond who is the other member of the Weekend Terrier Group. He was ready to help with the search and off we went. Ann went north to try to enter the ravine and work her way south. Raymond went to the ravine entrance which Bridget had been known to use as an escape route and I went to Bridget’s favourite neighbourhood. Ann had already searched these places but we decided to start where Bridget was last seen.
As I walked by the houses that backed on to the ravine, I called for Bridget. I heard a high pitched “yip.” I waited and called again. Nothing. I called one more time and heard a “yip.”
Raymond was shortly on the scene after having no luck with sighting her further up the ravine. We walked further down the street and went back into the ravine via very icy wooden steps. As we descended, we called to Bridget. We we so excited to hear another “yip.” We were pretty sure it was Bridget. Because of the ice storm earlier in the season, the ravine was covered in a thick layer of sheer ice. Raymond was concerned that it was too icy and told me to go back up and meet him at the other entrance to the ravine. Typical of Raymond to worry about everyone else before himself.
Raymond made his way toward the place we thought we heard the “yip” coming from. He did not hear it again but kept hoping he would see Bridget. Finally, he saw her. She was all curled up in a little ball further up the steep hill. To get to Bridget, he had to grasp on to twigs and branches that were stuck in the ice and crawl his way up to her.
As he got to Bridget, she barked frantically as if to say ,“It’s about time someone found me.” When she made her big escape her leash was still attached. The leash had gotten caught in twigs and branches and Bridget found herself unable to move. She had curled up and waited. We think she had been in that one spot since the time she had disappeared. It was a very cold day so she curled up into a tight little ball.
Raymond decided that to go back down the hill would be too dangerous so the only other option was to go up. There were houses that backed on the ravine and he was hoping he could get to one. They made their way slowly up the icy slope.
Once at the top, Raymond put Bridget over a five foot fence and then climbed over all the while holding on to Bridget’s leash in the event she decided to try her luck again. Now, they were on their way home.
I was making my way back to the point we said we would meet and had stopped to ask other dog owners if they had seen Bridget. As we were discussing her big escape, I looked down the street and saw Raymond. Bridget was by his side practically dancing with glee.
I called Ann right away with the news. Ann was already making her way toward our location after I had informed her that we thought we heard Bridget in the ravine.
Ann and Bridget were reunited and I have never seen Bridget so excited to go home.
Raymond is a hero.
It was very scary in those moments when we didn’t know where Bridget was. The Weekend Terrier Group is close and we care so much about each other’s dogs. It was a very emotional moment to see Bridget come trotting down the road with Raymond.
We are so glad she is home safe and sound with Ann.