An Arkansas family was finally reunited with their dog, which disappeared a decade ago after an animal rescue group discovered their pet 1,600 miles away thanks to a microchip.
Razzle, a black miniature schnauzer, went missing from the Howard family’s home in the town of McRae back in 2011.
Video of the touching scene was posted to Facebook on Friday, showing Razzle’s long flight and journey home and the moment he was reunited with his family.
‘A little bit older than you probably last saw him,’ rescuer Jeremy Wade told the Howard’s as he brought the dog out of it’s crate on the small single-engine plane.
‘Just a little bit,’ Aaron Howard responded.
‘It’s Razzle!’ he exclaimed right after, as Rhonda Howard makes her way to him.
The family could then be seen embracing the long-lost pup, who was ultimately found in Stockton, California, 1,600 miles away from where he went missing from his family’s home in the Ozarks back in 2011.
Razzle was then taken to a local shelter at some point, where his health had deteriorated significantly and his ‘medical state was so fragile’ that he wouldn’t have survived a commercial flight as animal cargo, according to Wade.
So a local animal lover and pilot, Wade agreed to fly him from California to Arkansas to reunite him with his family. On Tuesday, Vickey Langley and her sister Rhonda welcomed him home in a tearful reunion.
‘Getting Razzle back has meant the world to our family,’ Langley, who got Razzle microchipped for her sister Rhonda Howard back in 2005, told the news outlet.
‘We have been overwhelmed with the kindness from all the people who have helped to get him home.
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Pictured: Rhonda Howard reunites with Razzle who went missing from the family’s home in 2011, turning up in all the way California where he was discovered at a shelter
Razzle went missing from the Howard family’s home in the town of McRae back in 2011. Pictured after his recovery
The Howard family was reunited with their lost dog Tuesday after 10 years apart, following an incredible 1,600 mile rescue mission to bring the pup home from California to Arkansas
Simon and Seth, then 5 and 12-years old, respectively, and their dog Razzle (right) prior to the pup’s disappearance. Now, at 18 and 25 years old, the two boys were able to hold him once again
Razzle’s microchip led Pilots N Paws, an animal rescue group, to determine his owners, with the group’s ‘transport queen’ Jennifer Colletto then contacting dog rescuer Wade to fly the dog home.
‘It was so wonderful to reach in and lift him out of the crate for them to see him for the first time,’ Wade told Fox News.
‘I’d just like to think of myself as a very small part of a very important chain that has to all work to try to reduce the number of homeless or neglected animals out there,’ Wade told Fox News.
Razzle had received ‘lots of vet visits… as they tried to stabilize his health a bit,’ for the long trip home.
‘His health was dire when the shelter found him,’ Wade said of the start of Razzle’s dramatic cross-country rescue.
Pictured: the Howard family reunited with Razzle after the dog’s owners were identified through a microchip scan
Wade said the dog’s ‘medical state was so fragile’ that he wouldn’t have survived a commercial flight as animal cargo, so he offered to fly Razzle directly to his home himself
Wade is a dog rescuer and airplane pilot hobbyist with the rescue group Pilots N Pups, which reunites lost dog’s with their owners throughout the country
‘It is impossible generally to get to Arkansas without a stopover, unless [you’re] going to XNA [Northwest Arkansas National Airport] in Fayetteville, where they sometimes have direct flights,’ Wade said.
Their journey began around 3:30am on July 6, when Wade flew from San Carlos in the southern part of California to Stockton in Northern California, where Razzle was waiting for him in the shelter.
After a five-and-a-half-hour long flight to Santa Fe, New Mexico for a fuel stop, the two continued along the trip for another five-and-a-half hours to Heber Springs, Arkansas, incidentally the town that Wade grew up in, where Razzle’s family awaited their arrival.
‘And so it was my pleasure to get to be a part of getting him home,’ he said.