Dog reunites with family at Fort Myers shelter 3 years after being stolen in Miami

(WSVN) - After spending several years apart, a family and their pet are now together again.

A search for new pooch after theirs was stolen came to a surprising end, which led to a remarkable reunion.

It was an extremely fortunate find. Years after their dog was taken in South Florida, their story came full circle.

This little ball of fun is Zion.

“Zion came to us through another rescue locally,” said Shannon Palzer, shelter manager at Gulf Coast Humane Society.

For more than 300 days, Zion called a Fort Myers animal shelter his home.

“He was adopted out a few times, but it just wasn’t the right fit for him,” Palzer said.

But last week, in a crazy twist of fate, Zion did find his forever home with a very familiar family.

“Last week somebody came in and was calling and saying that that’s their dog,” Palzer said.

That person was Cherrie Terry, Zion’s first owner.

“He was a great dog, we raised him since he was a baby,” Terry said.

And she and her family had been searching for Zion for three years after he was stolen from them in Miami.

“My mom called every place, everywhere. At one point, we just kind of gave up, and that’s when I started looking for a whole new dog,” Terry said.

That’s what led Cherrie to the Gulf Coast Humane Society’s website after she and her family recently moved to Lehigh Acres.

“I saw him and I was like, ‘That looks exactly like my dog!'” Terry said.

They checked Zion’s microchip just to be sure. It was a match.

And so, after three years apart, Zion, a little bigger, older, and mysteriously missing one foot that doesn’t seem to slow him down, finally returned home.

“I would be lying if I said I wasn’t crying because I think we all were. I really missed him,” Palzer said.

The shelter manager said this story is a perfect reminder of how important it is to get your pets microchipped, so they can be returned safely if they ever disappear.

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