A MISSING dog has been found in Swindon, Wiltshire - more than 15 miles away from his home in Cirencester, Gloucestershire.
Max, a six-month-old Springer Spaniel, was found at a council tip near Wroughton last week. He had been away from home from the end of March until the end of April. It is thought the Spaniel escaped from the back garden of his home and walked through many fields, although it is possible he was kidnapped by would-be thieves and then dumped.
Max's owner, Fiona Messenger, said: "We never gave up hope of one day seeing Max again. When we were reunited with him he was very thin. He was very tired and had no life in his eyes. Although he had very little strength he did manage a wag of his tail when he saw me."
Fiona, who lives with husband Paul, and children Jessica, 22, and Jack, 17, said they were all delighted to have their dog back.
"We are nursing him back to health, but he is still very tired, " she said. "We're trying to give him as much tender loving care as possible."
Wroughton dog owner Sandra Brookman was called to the tip by the man who found Max, because he thought it was her Spaniel, Bella, who has been missing since February 18. Both Max and Ella are registered missing with the Internet-based missing dog registry Doglost.
Rose Downie, the South West area co-ordinator for Doglost said: "The fact that Max was microchipped made it easier to locate his owners. Our dog warden, who contacted the owners, said it is vital to get all dogs chipped, as it is a very effective way of reuniting stray and missing dogs with their owners. We went to see Max and his owners on Saturday. Although he is very thin and has an injury to his leg he is now doing fine."
Rose and her husband Andrew are two of the many volunteers from the site that helps to find lost and stolen dogs.
* Doglost website: www.doglost.co.uk