Rocky the Boxer is the latest inductee in the Lassie Come Home Hall of Fame. But unlike the classic Eric Knight tale, it wasn’t a mysterious canine instinct that brought the 5-year-old dog back to his people. This reunion happened thanks to a microchip and a crew of kind-hearted drivers from Highway Heroes Rescue Transport.
In 2013, Rocky bolted out the door of his home in Mesa, Arizona, and vanished. As months wore on, owner Brittany Romero lost hope that she and her son, Aden Wasil, 12, would ever see their pet again.Romero was stunned when she received a phone call in late July from an animal clinic telling her that Rocky had been found and was alive and well.
A family noticed him wandering stray and took him in. He had been living there for a while before they asked a vet to check for a microchip.
The clinic called Romero and gave her the good news. The bad news was that he was 1,800 miles away in Elkhart, Indiana.
Enter Highway Heroes Rescue Transport. The group’s motto is, “No pet is to far to save.”
Over three days and 26 separate legs, Rocky was passed, like the baton in a relay race, from one volunteer driver to the next.
Finally, on Sunday morning, July 26, he was back in the arms of his ecstatic family.
In Knight’s story, Lassie’s trip from England to Scotland was a mystery to her people. But only the first part of Rocky’s journey is unknown. His return was chronicled in detail on a charming Facebook page, “Rocky’s Journey: One dog, Many people, 1,800 Miles.”
The page shows images of Rocky’s relay team and the Boxer having the time of his life on each new part of the trip. There are a lot of smiling faces, hugs, and Boxer kisses. Best of all, the page serves as a great way to thank the kind people who made it possible for Rocky to come home.
Make sure your dog will find his way back to you by enrolling in the AKC Reunite pet recovery service.