'Never give up hope': 5-month search for Valley dog ends with incredible reunion

5 months of searching and 1,000 miles later, Cody finally returns home to his family in Phoenix.

PHOENIX - He traveled nearly 1,000 miles across several states, but today, a dog that went missing almost five months ago, is back home.

“A very loving sweet dog,” said John Lacina, sharing about his 5-year-old German Shepherd named Cody.

Cody started his long journey on May 18.

“There was a storm here in town, he got loose,” Lacina said.

But Cody isn’t just any ordinary family dog. John has MS and Cody is his companion.

“If I fall down or trip or anything, he’s right there,” Lacina said.

Losing Cody left a big void in his life.

“I ended up having professional signs made up and posted them all over the Valley,” he said. “I hired a company that had a drone, they were FAA qualified, flew a mile-square area twice.”

And one of his friends posted a picture on Lost Dogs Arizona.

No luck.

“We found countless other black German Shepherds that weren’t him,” said Stephanie Shultz, Lacina’s family friend.

"Just a real empty feeling,” Lacina said.

Lacina notified his vet and Pet Link, the company who have Cody his microchip. Then on October 3, he got a phone call.

“They located the dog north of San Antonio, Texas, 932 miles away,” he said. “The chip is what saved him.”

Lacina drove to meet up with the people who found Cody, and the two were reunited.

“I said ‘Cody’ and he looked up and just started pulling me and running over, started licking me in the face and immediately jumped in the truck and then I drove 20 hours back with him,” Lacina said.

Other than losing some weight, getting a few scratches on his face and getting fleas, Cody was in pretty good shape.

“Never give up hope,” said Shultz. “Stranger things have happened, almost a thousand miles away.”

And now Cody is home sweet home.

“When he went missing he was heartbroken, but when he got home – major difference,” she said. “They need each other.”

“Everybody should have a dog like this,” Lacina said.


© 2017 KPNX-TV


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