Family thankful to have missing dog back

A small, 6-pound dog disappeared from her owners during a snowy weekend in January, and was found days later. Owners say it was a miracle she survived.

The Claytons — Meisha, 19, Monique, 11, and their mother, Tina, had lost their 7-year-old pomeranian, Coco, prior to a snowy weekend on Jan. 20, and were emotionally devastated. They hoped for the best, but prepared for the worst.

“I personally think that this is proof that God exists because I couldn’t see how a little dog like her could survive in snow,” Meisha said.

Meisha said that the dog escaped on a Friday morning, while being taken outside.

“My boyfriend and his friend tried to catch her,” Meisha said, “but she got freaked out and scared — so she started running down the street.”

This happened on Middle Street, and Meisha said they looked for the dog for two hours that morning, but decided to take a break to call the Humane Society of Auglaize County, the Wapakoneta Police Department and the dog warden to notify of their missing dog.

That evening, the sisters, Meisha and Monique, placed signs to report their missing dog, and as they put one up at East of Chicago Pizza, the manager had told them that they had seen it, but were unable to catch her.

“I couldn’t sleep,” Meisha said, on Friday evening. “On Saturday the roads were really bad, but I drove around in the country and in town, but there was no sign of her.”

By Sunday morning, the family still had not heard a word.

But then a lady reported having seen Coco to police dispatchers, who then called the sisters’ grandmother, Carrie Steinke, who then went out looking for the dog near Daisy Street on Sunday afternoon.

“On Sunday, the police called and said a lady was going to put the dog in her house,” Steinke said.

The lady was going to attempt to give the dog food and a warm place to stay until Steinke came to pick it up.

But Meisha said that Coco was probably scared, since she did not know the lady, and Coco took off running, again.

When the dog escaped from the lady, police officers were trying to catch her.

“The cop tried to call her, but she didn’t go to them,” Meisha said.

Coco had then disappeared into snow that was just as tall as she was.

Steinke drove around  the area that the dog was last spotted, and as she was driving she said she saw two little ears across the field, near the water tower on Defiance Street.

Coco then went to Steinke, as she was a familiar face to the dog.

Coco, who had recently gotten her hair cut, was wearing a sweater when she was last spotted by the family on Friday, but she was without a sweater on Sunday. Steinke thought she had lost it along the journey.

“It’s a miracle this dog was still alive,” Steinke said, as Coco had hiked across town in large amounts of snow.

“I was really excited because we thought she just ran off and we would never find her,” Meisha said when she found out the news. “God answers prayers.”

Steinke said she told her granddaughters, during the time Coco was missing, all they could do was hope and pray that they would find their dog, and they did.

“She has never been gone for that long,” Tina said. “She was trying to find her way home, but took a wrong turn.”

The sisters said that they cried all weekend.

“This was not a good experience,” Meisha said. “I am extremely close to pets, so it was like losing a child.”

The Claytons had previously lost their cat just prior to having Coco go missing.

“It’s funny how these little dogs can get so far, and not get hit by a car and survive in the snow,” Tina said.

In addition, another incident happened this past weekend, when Hannah Martin, of St. Marys, had reported her dog missing in Wapakoneta.

She called the Wapakoneta Police Department at 9:47 p.m. on Jan. 27, and said that while she was in town, her chihuahua escaped.

The dog was then reported at 8:16 a.m. on Jan. 28 on Water Street, so an officer came out and tried to catch it, but was unsuccessful.

The dog then took off near Wapakoneta-Cridersville Road.

Martin called dispatchers on Saturday to find out any news of her missing dog, and they told her the area in which the dog, which was described to be hers, was spotted.

Martin then came to Wapakoneta, with another dog of hers to try to coax the chihuahua with her other dog, and sure enough, the chihuahua scented the other dog and the owner found her dog around 11:33 a.m. on Jan. 28 near Water Street.