A German Shepherd was found in Virginia and returned to a San Diego family last week after going missing three years ago.
During a messy break-up, the dog, Rico, was taken away from Andrea Arce and given away. The incident left her and her two daughters, ages 6 and 8, heartbroken, Fox 5 San Diego reported (video below).
However, a couple of weeks ago, the family received a call from an animal shelter employee who said that the 6-year-old dog had been spotted wandering the streets in Virginia.
It’s unclear how Rico ended up across the country, but he was flown back home Saturday night on a United Airlines flight, where Arce and her two kids went to pick him up. But the girls had no idea that they were about to be reunited with their old friend.
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The emotional reunion was caught on camera. In the video, the German Shepherd can be heard whining and scratching at his crate as the family walks up to him.
Once he is released from the crate, Rico jumps into the arms of his old family.
“It’s the connection that we had for the first three years of his life,” Arce told the station. “We never forgot him and he never forgot us.”
Watch the entire reunion below: