Panda is back with her family after seven months in the wild thanks to the men and women of Marana Animal Services (and a microchip).
Panda the dog had been missing from her south side home for over seven months, but when Town of Marana animal services staff found her at a convenience store on Cortaro Road, they assumed she ran off after getting scared on the Fourth of July. While fireworks were indeed the culprit, it was actually a New Year’s Eve celebration that led to Panda’s flight.
Luckily, Panda had a microchip, and Marana Animal Services was able to contact the family.
“It made my week,” said Marana Community and Neighborhood Services Director Lisa Shafer, who had picked up Panda from the convenience store.
Shafer was told by the family they’d given up hope of finding Panda, and were surprised she turned up over 30 miles away from home.
Marana Animal Services has been in place since July 2017 and has had experienced success reuniting families with their pets. During the first six months of operations, the division returned 47 percent of pets picked up back to their families before reaching the shelter. Those numbers have remained consistent in the months following.
“This is why we do what we do,” Shafer said.
Panda was not the only successful reunification. Roxy the terrier-mix was lost in the Continental Ranch area. Marana Police Officers found the missing dog and were able to return her to her family in a tearful reunion at a local veterinary office.
This story is part of a partnership with the Town of Marana News Room, which can be found online at maranaaz.gov/news.