You’re on vacation, and somehow your family dog disappears. You search and pray and then you search some more. As the days go by without a word, your brain may tell you it’s time to lose hope, but in your heart it never does.
And sometimes that hope pays off.
The Battista family from New York City was on vacation in Ocean City, Maryland, when their 2-year-old Boston terrier Fisher went AWOL on July 4, 2020.
The Battists immediately covered the area with missing posters, bombed social media, and even put Fisher face-to-face on a local floating billboard.
With no leads, the family decided to stay in the area for an extended stay. They hired a tracker and even went so far as to consult with an “animal communicator” in hopes of accessing Fisher’s whereabouts using ESP puppy, all to no avail.
The family also created a #findfisher Facebook page, which quickly gathered 8,000 followers, and launched an online fundraiser to raise awareness and assist them in their efforts to bring their beloved furry baby home.
“We’ve alerted the Ocean City Police, Fire Department, Beach Patrol, Postal Service, Scopes, Lifeguards, you name it!” Matthew Battista wrote to Fisher’s GoFundMe page.
“Signs have been posted from the inlet to 77th St, and we’ve extended our scrutiny to the nearby Delaware beaches of Fenwick, Bethany, Dewey and Reheboth. We have extended our stay in Ocean City and have agreed to bring in a professional dog tracker, in addition to ongoing search trips by car, foot, and bike. “
Although they were eventually forced to return home to New York without Fisher, the Battists refused to give up. But even with the massive media blitz, it looked like Fisher had put out a full Houdini.
Undaunted, the Battists kept the wheels of the internet vine rolling, refusing to let the details of Fisher’s disappearance be forgotten. As a result, Fisher became something of a media darling in absentia.
And that is surely one of the reasons why the Battists’ perseverance paid off.
On April 20, 2021, 290 days after Fisher made his unauthorized departure for Independence Day, Baltimore City resident Wayne Horn was performing maintenance on his motorcycle when he noticed a stray dog on the road. highway.
“I called him because cars were going up and down my way,” Horn said. Delaware Online. “He came up to me, so we gave him water. He went to bed and was happy, he didn’t want to leave. “
When a friend of Horn posted a photo of the found dog on Facebook, the responses of “That’s Fisher!” came back faster than a boomerang.
Although the findings were later confirmed by a micro-ship scan, Elissa Battista recognized Fisher immediately. “From the moment I saw the photos I knew it was him because of the marks and his little tongue sticking out,” he posted on Facebook.
The meeting was quickly organized. The Battists had some local friends pick him up from the Horns, and then Elissa made the five-hour drive to retrieve Fisher and take him home. Aside from minor signs of possible frostbite, Fisher was in excellent shape.
The Battists are so grateful to have Fisher back, now they are doing their part to pay, once again using the powers of social media for good. The Facebook page formerly known as “Find Fisher” has been transformed into “Find Fisher’s friendsAnd now he is dedicated to helping other pet owners locate their lost four-legged loved ones.
The family has also pledged to apply the leftover funds from his GoFundMe to Fisher’s chosen charity once he is safe and sound with his family. While we’re still waiting “wow” about what it could be, the conclusions of this story seem clear:
Social media and microchips are powerful tools for reuniting lost pets with their families. Using both is the best chance for a happy outcome.
And while the reunion isn’t guaranteed, if you’re thinking of losing hope, don’t. Because more than anything, as Fisher’s 10-month walk shows, hope has no expiration date.
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