May 18, 2009

Missing police dog found after 4 days

A Chicago police dog that ran off during a thunderstorm was found four days later by a man who recognized the animal from the news, authorities said.

Canine Unit Officer Rick King, Bear the dog's handler, said the 2 1/2-year-old German shepherd was outside relieving himself during a lull in thunderstorms Wednesday night when he was spooked by a clap of thunder and jumped a fence to flee King's yard, the Chicago Tribune reported Monday.

King said he barely slept while Bear was missing and followed up on reports of found dogs from around the area.

It's like your child. Animal lovers will know what I'm talking about, King said.

However, it wasn't until Sunday morning that Bear was spotted outside of a hardware store by passerby Howard Overton.

I said, 'That looks like the dog on the news,' Overton said.

Overton alerted a passing police officer who caught Bear and verified his identity using an implanted microchip.

He's a little shaggy and a little dirty, King said after he was reunited with the canine. But otherwise, he seems fine.