SOUTHWEST HARBOR — After a month on the run, Sophie, a skittish border collie from Southwest Harbor, has been reunited with her owner.
Sophie went missing on Oct. 21, and had never done anything like that before, said owner Jill Smith. Smith got Sophie as a puppy two years ago, along with a littermate named Rori, in Pennsylvania.
Smith let her four dogs out to play. “My other three dogs came right back, they listen very well, but Sophie must have been too far away to find her way home,” she said.
When Sophie didn’t return, Smith took to social media for help. She posted to Facebook’s MDI Lost/Found Pet Alert and Maine Lost Dog Recovery pages and the community soon took note.
Every few days there were sightings of Sophie around town. “I was searching for her, I heard her barking, but I couldn’t get to where she was,” said Smith. Various community members helped put together flyers and searched for the dog.
“One day I got a call from someone saying that my dog was around Ike’s Point, so I went there to look for her with a food bowl. Someone else drove up who and they went wandering for over an hour just to look for her,” she said.
Smith believes it was difficult to catch Sophie because she is shy.
“People tried to put her in their vehicles, and she didn’t like that because it takes her a while to warm up to new people,” Smith said.
After being told of the missing dog, Martie Crone, who sets up feeding stations, cameras and traps for the Maine Lost Dog Recovery, assembled a trap with hopes of capturing the dog. After a week-long process of luring her to a feeding station, which was monitored via cell camera, Crone was alerted at 2:45 a.m. on Oct. 30 that Sophie had been caught. Crone promptly removed Sophie from the crate and returned her to her owner.
“I’m so glad she’s home doing fine, eating and playing with her siblings,” said Smith, who is grateful to everyone who helped.
“Many people took time out of their day who didn’t even know me to help in any way they could and for that I am thankful.”
*Correction: This story was corrected on Dec. 14 to update the conditions by which Sophie was caught.