A girl, Brierley Howard, has been reunited with her pet dog, Iggy, almost five years after it vanished. The 12 year-old was overjoyed when she was told that Iggy the labrador had turned up 130 miles away.Iggy was an 18-month-old puppy when he disappeared in August 2005. Brierley and her brother Jasper, now 14, were devastated. Their mum and dad Karen and Eric believed he had been stolen.
But the family, from Balladen, in Rawtenstall, Lancs, are celebrating after Iggy was spotted wandering the streets in Leicester and taken to a vet.The vet discovered Iggy was fitted with a microchip and he has now been reunited with Brierley and her family.
Mrs Howard, 44, said: “We had given up all hope.”It is just so great to have him back – although I would never have recognised him. He has put on quite a bit of weight.”"Amazingly though he is just the same and still plays like he is a puppy.”Fortunately for us, the woman took him to a vet, they scanned him and got in touch with the microchip people. They said the only thing we have got on this scan is this dog was stolen five years ago.
“When I rang the lady she said ‘What did you say his name was?’ I told her and she repeated it and then said ‘Oh goodness, his ears pricked up’. He remembered his name.” After returning home, Iggy found that he had a new doggie playmate, Odie.However, his old lead had been kept.Mrs Howard, a photographer, said the story is proof microchipping can make all the difference, no matter how long it takes.She said: “We felt we couldn’t not go back for him.”So we drove down to Leicester that night. We just told the kids we had got some exciting news and they were thrilled.
“There hasn’t been a week gone by when I didn’t worry or wonder where he was. He’s just adorable, but massively overweight. He’s obviously been cared for but not had much exercise. The dog warden in Leicester said the theft of dogs is quite a big thing.
“Dogs are stolen and it’s normal for them to be driven a distance so there’s no chance of them being found.”