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Family uses social media to find lost pet - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Family uses social media to find lost pet

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

A Burlington family had a hectic weekend trying to find their lost dog.

Their labrador Luna ran away Friday night and the Hobbs spent the following days glued to the phone and the Internet in hopes of finding her. They say Facebook is the reason they were reunited with Luna.

Halloween weekend is scary enough, but for Luna the lab it was extra spooky because she was separated from her family.

"I was a wreck I just wanted to drive around and search and search and search and start knocking on doors," said owner Paul Hobbs.

Luna was playing in the backyard when she ran off and by the time the Hobbs noticed, she was long gone. The worst part-- she wasn't wearing her collar, because the jingling tags irritate her.

Paul and Michelle Hobbs searched until it was too dark. Then, they turned to web for help. Michelle is a graphic designer so she made a picture with Luna's information very quickly.

"I thought that would be a good way to distribute it so they not only see her face but read her description," she said.

The Hobbs reached out to police to see if anyone had turned the lab in, but they never heard back -- so the web was where they focused their most energy. Experts say these days it's the right move.

"You are able to access a much larger network and reach so many more people much more so than you would if you were putting a poster on one street in one neighborhood," said Alex Tursi.

The Hobbs also alerted local vets and kennels.

"Encouraging people to share it really works," said Michelle Hobbs. "I definitely do it when I see it especially if it's someone close by that I know it's been an immediate thing it really gets the word out there."

Cue the fateful twist, a friend of the Hobbs was at a party talking about how Luna was missing when another couple there said someone had turned in a dog with a similar description at a local shelter. The social media presence helped confirm the good news.

"My friend had seen her picture on Facebook and was able to show it to people that she was talking to about the dog," said Michelle Hobbs.

Craig's List lost and found and Front Porch forum are also useful tools. The Hobbs say there is no such thing as too much help.

To make sure this doesn't happen again the Hobbs plan to get Luna a new collar that doesn't jingle when she walks and install some fencing in their backyard so she can still have fun, but stay home.

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