Patricia Lewis, who lives on Recker Road in Troy Township, and her house guest, Paul Urban, are used to seeing dogs show up out of nowhere.
When Middi, a 13-year old dachshund mix, came walking into their homestead on Friday, August 17 at about 7 p.m., the couple thought little of it.
“We live in a very secluded area and we get dogs out here all the time. So we see this dog prancing down the street,” recalled Urban, who is retired.
“Pat was on her way to work (at Genoa Care Center) and she called me back on the phone and said, ‘This dog is going towards Bradner Road,’ and we live just west of Bradner.”
The next day, the dog found its way to their barn.
“I called Pat and I said, ‘The dog’s here,’ and she said, ‘Well, don’t call the dog catcher. I kind of like the looks of that dog.’ “I said, ‘okay.’ We’re used to dogs and we love them.” Urban continued.
Urban had an inclination to call the humane society. However, the couple was also considering keeping the dog if its owner could not be found.
On Sunday, Urban read a story about a lost dog in The Press newspaper that included a photo that looked like the dog that had wandered to their home.
“I started reading The Press and there I see the dog that we had put in one of the kennels,” he said.
He called the two phone numbers listed in the article for the dog’s owner, Libby Carstensen, “Well, I called the one number and evidently it was a cell phone, so all I got was a machine,” said Urban. He left Libby a message. “I told her, `I’m 99 percent sure that I’ve got your dog.”’
He called the second number, and got veterinarian Richard Carstensen, Libby’s father. “He said, ‘I’ll be right there.’ We had the dog here and locked up and everything was fine,” said Urban.
“He brought his wife, who I understand is also a vet, so they both came. My God, she got all teary-eyed, and I opened the kennel and she picked the dog up and was just hugging it, you know.”
Libby, a 20-year old Bono resident, was only eight-years-old when she adopted Middi.
The dog had been missing since August 14 when it dug out from under a fence at a location just off State Route 163. It had been the longest Carstensen had been without Middi. The dog is on thyroid medication and was unlikely to come if called due to hearing loss.
“I’m just sorry that the dog is reaching up in age,” Urban said.
Libby, who wasn’t home when Urban put the call into her father, was thankful for Middi’s recovery. The Troy Township home where Middi was found is 15 miles from Libby’s home, and one mile from where she disappeared.
Carstensen had posted fliers with Middi’s photograph throughout the area in hopes of finding the dog she used to play hide-and-seek with at her house.
“We sent fliers to all of the dog pounds and posted them in the neighborhood, visited all the dog pounds, and listed her on Toledo Petfinder,” said Carstensen. “I’ve been biking every day, up and down the roads, in between my house and 163, just looking in the ditches to find her. I don’t want to find her there, but just in case.”
Libby knew Middi was near the Troy Township home because she was receiving text messages from people who saw her walking on Recker Road.
“She has (an anxiety condition) and she really doesn’t like being caged. We were gone and she was in a kennel, so she was just trying to find her way home,” Libby said.
Middi, she added, has a mild temperament, though she is a bit skittish around strangers.
Libby says it was a stroke of luck Lewis and Urban found her.
“They are actually clients of my parents, so they knew who we were when they saw the article in the paper,” Libby said.
Middi lost a little weight and is limping on one of her hind legs, “but other than that she’s fine,” Libby said.
“I was so excited to find her. I was jumping up and down. I was screaming and she was so happy to be home. She was wagging her tail and recognized us right away. I am so happy. She’s been sleeping with me the last couple nights. It’s just wonderful. She’s eating non-stop. I’m so glad she’s back.”