Off the Leash Off the Leash

Army of volunteers helps lost dog

Jennifer Koczan was reunited with her dog, Sasha, after 5 years.

By Vetstreet Aug 21, 2013 4:16PM

Woman and her dog, courtesy of ABC News

When Jennifer Koczan of South Bend, Ind., got a message saying that her long-lost dog had been found in Arizona, she was “flabbergasted.” Sasha, her now 8-year-old Rottweiler, had gone missing from Koczan’s home in 2008 while she was at work. But now Koczan had a new dilemma: figuring out how to get the dog from the Arizona Humane Society in Phoenix before the five-day deadline was up. She quickly started calling friends in the area and found someone who could pick Sasha up.

Then she reached out to Kindred Hearts Transport Connection, an animal rescue and relocation group. With the help of their volunteers, a plan was made to get Sasha across the country.

Her road trip started Aug. 10 and took her through Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. She then had a weeklong break with a foster caretaker in Oklahoma before continuing through Missouri and Illinois and finally to Indiana, where she was reunited with Koczan on Sunday. The trip required 24 stops and 17 drivers who put in an hour or more each to get Sasha home.


Once Sasha reached Koczan’s house, "she was like, 'I've been here before, I know all of these people.' She kept looking at me with a look that said, 'I know you. I know I know you’ … It's like a blessing and a second chance," Koczan said. Read more at ABC News

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Aug 27, 2013 8:09PM
My pup got so upset over all the fireworks her first year that she actually jumped the beat up fence and took off.  Thankfully the sounds scared her right back home and to the door.  Needless to say I have a new taller fence and she stays in during the firecracker time which is usually a month.  She just reworks her day.  She stays in during the day and goes out after midnight usually and stays out until morning.  During the day I have to go out with her for "business" times.  Oh how I hate that holiday.. (not really).
Aug 25, 2013 5:44PM
I think this is a wonderful story of a dog reuninted with his owner. How often to you get them back, especially after a home invasion.
Aug 25, 2013 5:14PM

If I can not afford to drive to Arizona to pick up MY dog , I can not afford a dog !  Just more entitlement thinking by our society !  If work was a problem, you have vacation days,

personal days, sick days, comp days, etc.   Your boss would understand a couple of days off.

At least meet them half way !??   Hope you make a donation to all the organizations that did your work for you !!!????

Aug 25, 2013 4:46PM
Loved the story.  A happy one for a change.
Aug 25, 2013 4:42PM
Please don't let your dog get loose again... that will be the best way to show you care about Sasha.
Aug 24, 2013 1:07PM
Aug 21, 2013 11:38PM
I love love love this story..people really do care..fabulous!
Aug 21, 2013 11:20PM
If that dog was stolen, the person should not own the dog as she didn't give it adequate protection! My German Shepard, would NEVER go near anyone without my permission, and would actually wall you, and you wouldn't get away, until I called him off!
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