So we had a 5 day weekend last weekend. Thanks to local holidays plus US holidays, it was glorious. I had to put in some OT on Monday, but that’s OK. So Tuesday was setup to be a great day. Tuesday is mail day.

Then Jax ran away. Bad timing and not thinking led to him pushing through the inside heavy door and out the open outer gate. He was FREEEEE (in his mind) to run. Then he outran BellaFella.

It was a whirlwind of a 28 hours. Our housekeeper and a bunch of other locals got the word out on FB with a missing poster. We walked the neighborhood relentlessly. Our driver drove us around nonstop. We told people at the Embassy and they put out an alert to the whole community to look for him. Our neighbor skipped class to come home and look with me. People looked with us after work and drove us around (we still don’t have a car).

We thought he hadn’t crossed any of the big roads and was in the neighborhood area. We didn’t find him Tuesday.

Wednesday I decided to stay home from work again and continue to look. Housekeeper told me she got calls that morning that he was running along a main road a little farther away and she went there to look. She eventually came back to the house because it was such a large area. About an hour later, I went back out to do a foot search with the driver. After an hour of looking, we managed to go in the correct direction and 2 people who had seen him the day before and told us where to look. So we went off the road and into a construction/industrial area near the railroad tracks and stumbled upon a building/courtyard. My driver asked the gatekeeper if they had seen the dog and they pointed into the courtyard. I walked a bit...

AND THERE WAS JAX.

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He was huddled in a residual puddle on the concrete. His ears immediately perked up when I called his name but he didn’t come to me. I lost it, went over to him and sure enough, it was definitely him. But he had no light in his eyes. He was tired, exhausted, dehydrated and hurt. He stood up to greet me, but I could tell he was hurt. He couldn’t walk. So I carried him out of the courtyard. Our driver asked how to bring a car to the area (they were only a winding gravel road, we had walked in another way). So we drove home immediately. Our housekeeper met me at the door, our neighbor met me at the door, everyone was so happy. 3 grown women crying while petting him. I couldn’t get ahold of BellaFella (he was at work) but had the operator go find him. Turns out the neighbor (the counterpart at work) found him and told him ‘call your wife!’

So it looks like he wasn’t hit, but his paws are/were bad. With some calls to our US vet and visiting a vet here, he is bandaged, has drugs and is making a recovery. He took a day or two to finally eat a full meal but he’s up and walking some.... but still tired while he’s recovering. I mean, he’s growing back a lot of skin on his pads.

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Everyone at the embassy was so happy we found him. They were ready to mobilize workers to search if we hadn’t found him shortly. The Americans were all looking or having their household help look while out walking. My boss told me Tuesday night and Wednesday (after I found him) ‘BellaDella, stay home. Find your dog. Work will always be there.’

It’s absolutely terrifying to lose your dog. It’s somehow even more terrifying when you’re in a new city, there are nooks everywhere and YOU DONT SPEAK THE LANGUAGE. Thank god I had 2 people that I employ that like me and love the dog (or know I love the dog). We wouldn’t have found him without them. I gave them some extra money for the week as a thank you.

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We were lucky to find him: he had only been in that courtyard for about an hour. However, he hasn’t even went near our outside door in the day or so since he’s been up and walking. Maybe he’s learned his lesson? One can only hope. He’s not a street dog.