I had just walked into the locker room at the gym in my office building when I got a text message from Joni, with this photo and the message “found stray – can you come home to help?”
When I got home I was greeted by two barking dogs sitting on Riley’s bed in the corner. The dogs were getting along fine but were definitely unsettled and any attempts to calm them had now been negated by my presence.
Joni explained that she was out with Riley doing their daily walk of the Riverfront and Eastbank Esplanade downtown. On the east bank just south of the Steel Bridge, she saw a white German Shepherd mix wandering around by himself. After some coaxing and using Riley to draw him, the dog came over to Joni. He was wearing a collar but the only tag he had said “Rabies Vaccination” with a 5-digit number. It was clear the dog was lost so she brought him home.
I did a quick scan of Craigslist lost+found, and the Multnomah County Animal Shelter site and didn’t find any reports that matched this dog, so I posted on Craigslist and filed a found dog report on the shelter web site. We figured we’d give this an hour or two and if we didn’t hear anything, we’d take the dog to our vet to see if it is chipped. About an hour later, I got a call from the Shelter saying that somebody had called and asked about a dog that was close to my description. She said she’d call the person back and have him call me. Maybe 10 minutes later, I got a call from a guy saying he saw my post on Craigslist. I asked him a bunch of questions and it was obvious that this dog, Rahula, was his. He said he was at the downtown library so we agreed to meet at Waterfront Park near the Hawthorne Bridge.
Joni and I took both dogs with us, and when Rahula sighted his owner he immediately recognized him. The guy, whose name we never got, looked like he was in his young 20s and was ‘traveling’ on the west coast. (Joni later explained that ‘traveling’ is kind of like hitchhiking and visiting ‘friends’ up in various cities). He said he was camping with his group under the Burnside Bridge this morning when he let Rahula out and he ran off – something he never does. We talked for a while and was extremely grateful that Joni found Rahula and was kind enough to take him in and take responsibility for finding his owner.
Good luck, Rahula, and stay close to your group!