Missing dog reunited with family 4 years later

A dog missing for more than four years has been reunited with its family, according to our partners at KMIR.

“I saw him, and he came running to me. He licked me, jumps in my car, he shook my hand. The first night he slept with me,” Melisa Manning said about her reunion with her dog, Nico.

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Manning said she received a phone call from the Avid Microchip company telling her they found her dog alive. Nico had a microchip, but manning said she thought it was a mistake.

Nico wandered into a man’s backyard in Indio, Calif., a few months ago. The man took him in and fed him, but a neighbor reported him for animal cruelty because Nico was malnourished.

The man explained to animal control what happened, and Nico was scanned.

“I’m grateful to that family because they didn’t let him keep going. They stopped, and they cared for him and they welcomed him,” Manning said.  “And I’m thankful for that because if they hadn’t done that, he wouldn’t be with my family now.”

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“I do think that he was scrounging for food in multiple locations, and just trying to fend for himself in some way,” said Dr. Shakira Jameson.

Nico is thinner and shedding a little more than usual but the vet treating him said he will be fine.

“I’m brought to tears because I look at him and I’m sad for what he went through, but then I cry because I’m so joyful for the time I get to spend with him now,” Manning said.

It was not known how Nico initially went missing.

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