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Hoping for a safe return

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By Alison Taylor

Mozart is missing.

The flyers are everywhere, the reward for his safe return is sizable.

My heart goes out to his owner.

Mozart is a dark brown Pointer with white and grey spots Ñ a beautiful dog, just turn to page 19 if you don't believe me.

You can just tell he is well loved and sorely missed.

I hope he comes back soon.

There was a time when I never would have really paid attention to a missing dog flyer. Sure, I'd read it. I'd commiserate. But I wouldnÕt really think twice about it.

And then six months ago I got my own dog and well, things have changed.

My dog was just three months old when we were hanging out having fun on the Meadow Park fields (a.k.a. doggie heaven) one lazy morning. I ran into a fellow dog owner with his brood of four dogs and got to talking, as you do, about doggie things. The dogs were happily sniffing and playing together.

And then, out of nowhere, my little puppy got spooked and bolted.

At first I wasn't too worried. I thought she was just trying to get the other dogs to play with her. But it turns out she wasn't turning back.

I was almost too stunned to move. I called her name. She kept running. I yelled her name. She didn't flinch. I cried out her name. In vain. Everything unravelled in a matter of seconds. It was that easy.

Unfortunately I don't have the most commanding of all whistles. It comes out as a soft wheeze. I couldn't blame her. I wouldn't stop running for that whistle either.

And so, at one point my three-month old puppy was on one side of the Meadow Park fields, running like the wind, and I was clear across on the other side, staring agog at how my wonderful morning playing with my puppy in the park was turning into a nightmare.

Remember it was winter at this point. The fields were wet and slippery and muddy. It wasn't a pretty sight as I stumbled across, leash dragging in my hand.

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