Dog reunited with owners after almost a year lost
WHEN Martin McMaster's beloved dog disappeared from his yard in May last year, he was a wreck.
More than just a pet, staffy-cross Diesel was his best friend.
Mr McMaster's wife Tricia said her husband was inconsolable; he wouldn't even look at another dog for months because it was too upsetting.
The Bundaberg couple, which was living in Sydney at the time, tried everything to get the five-month-old puppy back, contacting the local vets, the council, putting up signs and even appealing for information through Facebook ... before conceding that Diesel had been stolen.
"We gave up hope of ever seeing him again," Mrs McMaster said.
But the smiles returned to the couple's faces in January this year when a call from the RSPCA revealed Diesel had been found.
"We were in shock," Mrs McMaster said.
On January 15, a New South Wales RSPCA inspector was forced to seize two dogs after they were found at Moruya on the NSW south coast, presumably abandoned.
Scans of the dog's microchip led the RSPCA to the McMasters.
"The RSPCA deserves a lot of praise," Mrs McMaster said.
"They looked after him and paid all the bills to have him flown up to Bundaberg.
"There is no way we would have ever got him back if he wasn't microchipped."
Mr McMaster said he was so excited to see Diesel for the first time, he had tears in his eyes as they made their way to Bundaberg airport for the reunion on Monday.
"It took him a few moments to register who we were but you could see when it clicked," he said.
"He started wagging his tail and jumping up on the cage."
Settling right in at home, Mrs McMaster said it was as though Diesel had never left them, and there were no signs he had been mistreated by those who took him.
"He's still the same gentle giant," she said.
"He was spoilt before so he's even more spoilt now."
The couple urged anyone with a pet to get them microchipped.