Kris Anderson thought she was dreaming when her missing dog, Georgia, walked back through the doggy-door and into Kris's bedroom.
The truth, however, was a lot better. It was more like a dream come true.
As the New York Daily News reports, Anderson had taken Georgia and her other dog to the Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve, about 35 miles from her home in Carlsbad, California, on June 27th. She let Georgia off her leash so that the eight-year-old Shar Pei mix could get some exercise.
Georgia dashed off to chase some rabbits, and though only a few minutes had passed, Anderson could find no trace of her beloved dog.
A frantic search followed.
Anderson enlisted the help of the park rangers, but could find no trace of her dog. The rangers warned Anderson that the preserve had a large population of coyotes, making it unlikely that Georgia would survive.
Anderson didn't give up hope. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, she and her daughter made the 70-mile round trip from Carlsbad to Los Pensaquitos over and over, hoping to find Georgia.
Little did they know that Georgia was already headed for home.
Nine days after she went missing, Georgia let herself into the house through the doggy door and jumped into Anderson's bed. She was thinner, covered in scratches, and very tired— but she was home.
Anderson had been asleep until Georgia woke her and couldn't believe her eyes.
“I couldn’t believe it,” she told the Union-Tribune. “I was thinking ‘'what?' 'How could this be?' 'Am I dreaming or is this really happening?'”
To get home, Georgia had to walk 35 miles through wilderness and suburbs— evading predators, traffic, July 4th fireworks, and a heavy rainstorm. The veterinarian who examined Georgia assured Anderson that the dog was in very good condition, despite her ordeal.
“I've heard of dogs doing things like this, but I've never seen it before,” veterinarian Luis Lizarraga told the Union-Tribune. “She's very lucky, absolutely.”
Anderson says that since she's been home Georgia has spent most of her time eating and sleeping— though the dog also keeps a lookout for her whenever she leaves the room.
That worry is mutual. After her beloved pup's miracle return, Anderson plans to keep Georgia on her leash from now on.
“I loved to let her off-leash because it’s her spirit and her light to run,” she said, “but I’m taking a vow now that I won’t do that anymore.”