A California family says they are 99 percent sure that they have finally recovered their missing golden retriever, who ran off in Tahoe National Forest in 2012.
Nathan and Erin Braun, of El Dorado Hills, lost their 5-year-old female retriever, named Murphy, during a camping trip in October 2012. They put up ads and flyers, never losing hope that they would one day be reunited.
Several weeks ago, camp host Jason Smith notified the Brauns that a dog matching Murphy’s description had been spotted at a campground on French Meadows Reservoir, about 11 miles from where they last saw their dog.
The family drove up June 7 and gave Smith the dog's favorite blanket and Nathan's baseball cap. Smith said he placed the items on the ground at his campsite and soon after, he found the golden retriever curled up on them.
"The very first night I laid it out I heard some movement," Smith said. "There was Murphy sleeping on the blanket. And right there I knew, that's Murphy. That's their dog. It was curled up with its head on the hat."
Smith eventually got the dog on a leash and the Brauns picked her up on Sunday.
"It was very touching," Smith said. "The whole family was crying. I was doing my best to not cry."
While the dog has a few new marks, the family believes that is because she has spent the last 20 months wandering in the wilderness and living off road kill and campground scraps.
They believe the dog is their Murphy, but they are also waiting on DNA test results to confirm. Either way, the dog has a new forever-home in El Dorado Hills.
Photo Source: TheBlaze