When Tae Bennett’s 2-year-old dog, Ollie, was stolen right in front of her eyes, she and her family were determined to bring him back home.
The thieves managed to get away with Ollie while the then 12-year-old was taking her pup for a walk in a local park. As soon as they were able to cut through the leash, they were gone in an instant.
In order to find her beloved pet ASAP, Tae and her parents made a Facebook group called “Find Ollie.” Here, they shared details on Ollie and his kidnappers and encouraged friends, family, and locals to share anything that may help them in their search.
The group was active for a while but, as years passed, things died down. Heartbroken, Tae eventually got a dachshund named Chilli as a replacement.
Then, at 22 years old, the miracle she had been waiting for finally came true.
“When I was told he’d been found alive I just burst into tears,” Tae said, “It was incredible, and I never thought this would happen.”
Sweet little Ollie was discovered by some children who were, ironically, in a park just 20 miles from her home in South London. Thanks to Ollie’s distinctive grey markings and microchip, he was quickly identified and given back to Tae’s family the very same day he was found!
In an update no one expected, Tae shared the good news on her “Find Ollie” Facebook group: “After being missing for just under a decade I couldn’t believe it was him. As soon as Ollie came into the room and heard my stepdads voice, he immediately walked over to him, rolled onto his back and let him scratch his belly.”
She added, “As for myself, it took him a little bit longer, believe it or not, I look and sound completely different than I did when I was 12.”
Although Tae’s best guess is that Ollie was used for breeding during the time he was gone, he seems to be in good condition and will be headed to a vet for a checkup very soon. In the meantime, he’s being “showered with love” as he gets used to being back where he belongs.
“He has settled in so well, considering I have a very needy Dachshund,” Tae said. “I often catch them having a cuddle on the beanbag. He doesn’t seem to be in any distress or pain and enjoys going out in our garden for a run around. I’m really careful when I take him out now. People really don’t realise how quickly this can happen and how devastating it is.”
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