Published online at Edmonton.Ctvnews.ca on Nov. 23, 2012.
Linda Hoang, CTV Edmonton: November 23, 2012
Man who put up billboard to find dog says method worked for him before
The man who put up a billboard in west Edmonton as a way to help locate his missing black Labrador Retriever says it’s not the first time he’s taken such measures to find his beloved pet.
Bob Lindsay is a duel-citizen and splits his time between Canada and California.
He had checked out of a pet-friendly hotel in west Edmonton in October and had driven down to Red Deer with what he thought was his three dogs in the back, when he realized one of his dogs, 12-year-old Rip, wasn’t in the vehicle.
“The latch on her crate had not shut properly and she was gone,” Lindsay said.
“I immediately turned around and called a couple of my friends to go look for her… I came straight back and couldn’t find her. Over the next couple of days I took all the steps possible to try to find her.”
Those steps included posting ads on a number of websites, alerting animal shelters and putting up a billboard which, as it turns out, isn’t the first time Lindsay’s used that method to succesfully find Rip.
“I had lost her once before when she was six months old,” Lindsay said.
“I rented a sign saying have you seen my black lab dog, she went missing, and about two weeks later someone called… It had worked for once in the past so I decided to do it again.”
This time around the Quality Inn at Stony Plain Road and 178 Street, where Lindsay had been staying when Rip went missing, agreed to let him place the billboard on its property.
“This is a person who really values his dog and I can appreciate that,” said Lillian Pushor, general manager of Quality Inn.
“They become a part of your family and for him, you know, it might be more than just a family member, so we were just happy to help.”
Lindsay stayed in town for more than a week searching for Rip with no luck.
“Nobody had seen anything anywhere so I was kind of getting frustrated,” he said. “I had kind of half given up on her.”
At that point Lindsay had left town and reached the Montana border when he received a phone call.
“I got enough of the description from her that I turned around and drove all the way back from the Montana border just to see if it was my dog,” he said.
And it was.
Lindsay was finally reunited with Rip, who had coincidentally been found right outside the CTV Edmonton building on the west end.
“They had actually picked her up right there at the CTV parking lot which is only a couple of blocks away from the hotel,” he said with a laugh.
It turns out the people who found Rip had taken her to be checked for a microchip, but said it wasn’t there, so Lindsay went to the vet to check for himself.
“They stamped her microchip and sure enough it wasn’t working. I was appalled that was kind of a scary thing,” he said.
Officials with the Edmonton Humane Society tell CTV News they don’t hear of cases where microchips stop working. Officials say microchips are typically very effective.
In the end, Lindsay said he’s happy to be reunited with his girl and finding her was worth all the effort.
“She’s my buddy and I’m her buddy. She’d go to the end of the world for me so I figured I’d go to the end of the world for her,” he said.
He put up a ‘found’ and ‘thank you’ notice on the original billboard to show how grateful he was to the people who found Rip, but also as a way to let other Edmontonians know this story has a happy ending.
“To put a lot of people’s minds at ease, kind of like the end of a good story,” he said.
With files from Amanda Anderson