The flea-bitten, matted St. Bernard stray that showed up last week near Festus, Mo., had quite a tale to tell.
Someone stole her five years ago from the Mahaffey family of Pueblo, Colo.
The Mahaffeys were devastated. Mom Brenda Mahaffey adopted the St. Bernard, then just 1-year-old, to be a companion dog for her daughters with special needs, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Then someone stole Missy from their fenced yard. The family posted a memorial photo of her on Facebook.
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Only Missy knows how she wound up the worse for wear in Jefferson County, Mo., nearly 900 miles away.
“She was kind of ratty, had a lot of fleas and stuff, but she had a chip,” Jefferson County Executive Ken Waller told Denver7.
“She’s just a cute dog. A fun-loving St. Bernard like you see in the movies. I guess miracles do happen, even for this loveable dog.”
When the shelter folks took Missy to a groomer, the groomer found the ID chip. The name of Missy’s owner was misspelled on the chip and the information was outdated. But Brandi Cross, a friend of the groomer, started poking around on Facebook and found the photo the Mahaffeys had posted in memory of Missy.
“We got a hold of the owner and they couldn’t believe the animal was still alive,” Waller said.
It’s taken a team effort to get Missy home. The Mahaffeys can’t travel easily because of their special needs children. So a friend of Cross, Melissa Wideman-Morton, volunteered to drive the dog home. A local Enterprise donated a car for $10 a day. The county waived the shelter fees.
Treats, long walks and trips to the doggie park await Missy when she gets home this weekend.
“I’m really excited, my daughters (are) excited. I just want to cry I’m so excited,” Brenda Mahaffey told KMOV in St. Louis.