Montreal community rallies, finds lost dog who went missing in freezing cold

Click to play video: 'Missing West Island dog reunited with owner'
Missing West Island dog reunited with owner
WATCH: It's a testament to the power of social media.A Montreal-area man has been happily reunited with his dog, who somehow managed to get loose Saturday morning in the midst of a polar vortex that kept most Montrealers indoors. The nine- year-old dog was on the run for nearly 48 hours before her owner got the call he had been waiting for. Global's Phil Carpenter reports. – Feb 6, 2023

A well organized search party in the Montreal suburb of Kirkland was set up on Sunday to help local resident Ryan Muscott find his lost dog, and by Monday morning, the Husky Labrador mix was found safe after surviving the weekend’s bitter cold.

“She’s been by my side for everything,” he told Global News fighting back tears outside the Kirkland arena on Sunday. “She was there for me when my dad passed away.”

‘She’ is Peetah, the nine-year-old pet who went missing Saturday morning in Dollard-des-Ormeaux and was luckily found by someone who had seen the social media post and recognized the dog early Monday morning, not far from where she went missing.

That person called Muscott at 6:30 a.m. to tell him there was a dog that matched the post’s description who was sitting on the porch of a house in the area.

Story continues below advertisement

After reuniting with the animal, the owner brought her to the vet to make sure she was doing okay after being outdoors in the freezing weather for nearly 48 hours. The vet assured the owner that Peetah was doing just fine — she had a bit of frostbite on her paws that would heal and her vital signs were stable.

Muscott said she was alert and doing well after eating some food.

“I just can’t thank everybody who put out their concerns, who shared my posts, who contacted me, who came out, who set up camp, who looked for her,” he said. He added that looking back on this ordeal, his biggest regret is not putting a GPS tracker on her.

“If you do it for your luggage, you can do it for your dog.”

He said he believes the reason she was in good shape was probably due to a mix of her breed and the fact that she likely stayed very active and warm throughout the two days.

Read more: Montrealers outraged after Dorval bear safely captured then euthanized by government

“She escaped from an open garage is what we’re thinking,” Muscott had said on Sunday.  “I just need to bring her back home, bring her to a vet, get her healthy.  She’s probably so scared.”

Story continues below advertisement

With temperatures in the minus 20s on Saturday, he was worried for the animal’s safety so he posted a notice to social media about the missing dog.

There was a flood of responses to his notice.

“I got a message from somebody in Australia who asked me if I found my dog, Alberta, I’ve had United Kingdom people reach out,” he said.

Click to play video: 'Montreal community gathers to find lost dog during freezing cold'
Montreal community gathers to find lost dog during freezing cold

Search parties started fanning out Saturday night and by Sunday morning neighbours estimate that hundreds were involved in the search, some from as far away as Laval.

Several showed up at the Kirkland arena Saturday to organize search parties.

“I feel really strongly about trying to help this person, because I would expect the same help if I needed it one day,” Jordyn Shell pointed out.

Story continues below advertisement

Karleigh Scully, another neighbour, agreed.

“A dog isn’t just a dog.  It’s your family.”

Even tracker and dog trainer Matthew King, owner of Chien and Drone, showed up with a bloodhound and a drone to help with the search.

“I havethree steps which is find, feed and then fetch,” he explained.

Peetah was spotted in the area around the Kirkland arena Sunday morning, about six kilometres from where she went missing.  So the aim, he said,  was to try and keep her in that area and not scare her further away.

Sponsored content