Chip reunites dog, owners
Thanks to a microchip smaller than a grain of rice, the Bankhead family was reunited Wednesday with sandy-colored cocker-retriever mix Puppers nearly three years after he went missing.
Edward Linsmier, Deseret Morning News
Kodi, front, Heather and Dan Bankhead greet Puppers, who was missing for nearly three years.
Puppers disappeared from the family's fenced yard while family members were out running errands. The Bankheads looked everywhere and called all the local animal shelters but were unable to find Puppers.
Then, out of the blue, Puppers turned up at the South Salt Lake Animal Shelter on Wednesday morning, and with the help of a high-tech microchip scanner, shelter officials were able to link the dog to the Bankheads.
Dan Bankhead said his family was shocked when they got the call that Puppers had been found.
"He looks healthy," Bankhead said. "He may be a bit dirty and shabby, but we're excited to have him back after more than 2 1/2 years."
Bankhead said his son, Dalin, 9, had a special relationship with the dog and was deeply saddened when Puppers disappeared.
"The dog wouldn't let Dalin go anywhere without him," he said.
Dalin Bankhead eagerly greeted Puppers when they were finally reunited.
The Bankheads are unsure how Puppers got out of their yard, but Dan Bankhead said he believes someone probably took Puppers, because the dog had gained weight, suggesting that he had not been living on the street for long.
Officials at South Salt Lake Animal Services said that it is important for owners to have microchips implanted in their pets. Once a chip is implanted, it is important to tell Animal Services when an owner's contact information changes.