Saint Francis of Assisi is the Catholic patron saint of animals.

There’s been something on my mind since my return from the Food & Wine Blogger Indaba; something that had me too heartsore to blog about.

My husband walks our dogs early on Sunday mornings, on the sports fields of Pirates, a local club. He goes as early as possible; our Lulubelle is intimidating to most humans and at this venue she can run free and wild without scaring anyone. She and Diski chase each other around, while Fat Fritzl is happy to trot by Old Spouse’s side, sniffing and lifting his leg frequently as they circle the field.

Two Sundays back, while I was in Cape Town, during their customary ramble, a flock of marathon runners came past and startled Fritzl. He took off like a bullet and couldn’t be found. Old Spouse searched the streets for hours, until darkness made him give up.

On my return to Johannesburg, I circulated posters to all the businesses, schools and veterinary practices in the area and beyond. And we waited, hopefully, with frequent prayers to Saint Frank.

Last night, exhausted and about to tuck in for the night, I checked my email inbox one last time. One unfamiliar name stood out and I clicked to open the mail:

Hi Cindy,

I’ve tried calling your phone a number of times, but it seems to be off. So I thought I’d try emailing as well in the hope that this will get through to you.

We found your dog while walking our dogs at Pirates and brought it home with us. The bartenders at Pirates gave us the email you circulated. We have another dog and a chicken (who Fritzl nearly killed!) so we can’t really look after him for too long.

Hoping you will get this and get in touch. Our address is xxx.


He’s back home, tail wagging at a speed that makes us fear it may fall off.



  1. Thank you God! What a blessing! I often see the “lost dog” or “missing cat” posters, and my heart aches. I always wonder if the fmily friend was found, or what happened. Our Princess has a chip implanted, but that is not a guarantee that if anyone found her they would have her scanned.

    What a wonderful person to pursue you so diligently – but I suppose the life of their pet chicken helped spur them along!

    Great news, Cindy! Hurray! Thank you God! BTW, how’s the recipe contest going? Should I start packing my bags? 😀

  2. I’m so happy you got him back. We love our dogs almost as much as our children (and spoil them more!) and would be heartbroken if we lost one.

    I love a happy ending 🙂

  3. So very very glad you got Fritzl back Cindy my friend. Its heartbreaking when they get lost like that. Thank goodness for these lovely folk who rescued him and gave him back. He nearly killed a chicken??? HAHA! He was thinking of that coq au vin of yours…… you xx

  4. Oh what WONDERFUL news!!!!! I know exactly whats been encircling your mind while dear Fritzl was missing!! My bubbles went missing last New Year – and well, within hours my mind had her enslaved in a dog fighting ring ……… i am absolutely delighted that he is safe and home!!! You can have a good nights sleep now!! Blessing on his rescuers!! xxx jan

  5. Oh, splendid, splendid news, Cindy! You don’t realise until they’re not there what huge characters they are in your life: such a gaping hole. Wonderful to hear he’s back 🙂

  6. Aw, Cindy – I am so glad. Not only for you, but also for Fritzl. Now he knows exactly what is home, sweet home.

  7. This is so wonderful! You were lucky to get him back. I used to lost 2 of my dog at the same time during sugar cane havasting season when we brought them with us. We let them lose in the wood and when we found out they are missing, we search the whole woods for 2 nights… but no luck..:(

  8. You must have been heart broken? And then so pleased!!!
    That happened to me once…. I even phoned highveld to post something on the radio!! Obviously they said “no, this is not the classifieds madame!!!” (Okay maybe exagerrated, but they wouldn’t do it.)

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