MILLBURY, Mass. - One Millbury family is celebrating a Christmas miracle - their dog who had been missing for 33 days returned home safe, and just in time for the holidays.
What You Need To Know
- A Millbury family is celebrating the return of their bulldog, who had been missing for 33 days.
- Betsy, a two year-old English Bulldog, lost 16 pounds while she was missing
- Her owner said she didn't require hospitalization and will soon be able to build back her weight
- Neighbors helped increase the reward for Betsy's return and searched the nearby woods
More than a month in the woods left Betsy, a two year-old English Bulldog, 16 pounds lighter.
"There were probably over 50 people out there looking for her, people driving around in cars, four-wheelers, searching on foot," said her owner Leah Rainville. "I was told within the first week, about 80 percent of dogs come home, so I really grasped on to that thought."
Rainville said Betsy went missing on November 19 when a neighbor let her out while she was at work. She did everything she could to try and track Betsy down - search parties, Facebook posts, calls to veterinarians and rescue leagues. As time wore on, however, hope began to fade.
"Yeah, there were times when I thought she wasn't going to come home and I wouldn't get her back, I cried a lot," Rainville said. "She's a great dog, I've had her since she was about 11 months old, she was always just so sweet, always wanted to be in your lap. I missed all of it."
33 days after Betsy went missing, Rainville was at work when one of her neighbors noticed her dogs barking at something in the backyard. When she went out on the back deck to investigate, she noticed Betsy and lured her over with some treats.
"I burst into tears, I went to the break room and the entourage followed me," Rainville said. "Within ten minutes, my dad called me and he said 'I have her, I have Betsy.' It was like someone won the World Series, everyone was cheering at work, hugs and tears."
With all the weight she lost, Betsy has needed round-the-clock care and prescription food to make sure she's stable. Starting Thursday, Rainville said she'll be able to start building back her bulldog weight.
Betsy won't be leaving her sight any time soon.
"I had this belief that she was going to come home, and there she is," Rainville said.