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16-year-old Surrey dog reunites with owner after 10 days missing on cliff

After 10 days apart, Sheba was found in a clearing amongst fallen trees and returned to her owner who "could finally breathe again".

16-year-old Sheba | Photo submitted by Sherri Storoshenko

A South Surrey dog owner was overjoyed last week when the excruciating 10-day search for her missing elderly dog came to an end, and she was reunited with her beloved side kick.

Sheba, a 16-year-old Labrador pit bull mix, wandered away from home around 8pm on April 1, as owner Sherri Storoshenko was packing for a camping trip, and the days that ensued were any dog owner's worst nightmare.

Storoshenko hired professional pet searchers and spent the following days knocking on doors, as well as making posters, flyers, and even using drones to try to track down her pup, but with no sightings at all, she began to lose hope.

"I was really afraid that she had fallen down this cliff and injured herself, or worse, passed away. Every day that went by I felt so much guilt that I lost her and that she might be gone forever," Storoshenko tells OhMyDog!.

However, 10 days after Sheba went missing, her owner got the news she'd be longing for when she received a message from a young couple saying they'd found her along the cliff side at 1001 Steps Park.

"She's my child, my best friend and my sidekick"

"I was honestly in a bit of disbelief when they said they had her," admits Storoshenko who has had Sheba since she was just 10 weeks old, and describes her as being her child, best friend and sidekick for 16 years. "I didn't want to get too excited until I saw her, but when they mentioned a cyst on her eyelid I was confident it was her."

Photo submitted by Sherri Storoshenko

Sheba was found in a small clear patch among blackberry bushes and fallen trees along the cliffside next to 1001 Steps Park in Surrey, in the same area that Storoshenko herself had searched days before to no avail.

"The young couple carried her up the cliff steps and were about to call a vet when they saw one of my posters," she recalls. "They sent me a message saying they found my dog and I’m honestly still in shock. Many people including myself searched that area, but I guess she finally found a good spot to wait and be rescued."

"It was like I could breathe again."

Storoshenko arranged to meet the couple in a parking lot and instantly broke down when she saw her beloved pup in their vehicle.

"As soon as I turned the corner and saw her I broke down and was balling my eyes out. I reached in and hugged her so much, I was just so relieved she was safe. It was like I could breathe again," she recalls.

Reunited | Photo submitted by Sherri Storoshenko

Sheba appeared "a bit confused, very dehydrated and had no energy", when she was reunited with her owner, so she was taken to the 24 hour Langley vet straight away to have some tests. Apart from weight loss, Sheba had no other issues and was brought home - and according to her owner, she's back to her normal self already. "By this morning she was already getting her personality back, barking and wanting to go for a walk!", laughs Storoshenko on April 12, just 2 days after she was found. "I don’t think anything can stop her. She’s such a trooper!"

"It warms my heart how many people care."

"She’s been my sidekick for my whole adult life. My friends say that Sheba is a mini me. We both love the outdoors and are stubborn as can be!", Storoshenko tells OhMyDog!, when describing just how devastating it was to have been without her best friend for 10 long days. Storoshenko also described how the community kept her going with their support and positive thoughts during the long days and sleepless nights without any sightings. "The neighbourhood jumped in helping with the search that night. As soon as people heard I was looking for her they started driving around, walking their dogs, riding bikes, on the hunt for Sheba. "That night there were probably 20 or more of us searching. I’ve never seen anything quite like it, it truly warms my heart how many people care."


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