A woman was reunited with her lost dog in the most unexpected of ways, according to her re-telling.
Aisha Nieves in Pennsylvania was looking to adopt a dog for her sons in June 2021. She told a TV reporter that she was scrolling through pictures in the Lehigh County Humane Society’s adoption site when she spotted a familiar face.
It was a tan pit bull-rottweiler mix, who looked a lot like the dog she lost two years earlier when a truck punched a hole in the fence of her property. Kovu escaped through the hole and vanished.
“I found out he was gone when I came home later that day and he wasn’t there to run to me and give me kisses like he usually did,” Nieves said. “I searched the whole house and couldn’t find him, then looked around Allentown for a good week or so and still couldn’t find him […] I was four months pregnant with my younger son at the time,” she added. “I had a lot of emotions going through me. I was crying, thinking the worst, thinking somebody kidnapped or hurt him. I was just devastated. He was there for me through everything — heartbreaks, ups and downs, and now he was gone. It was so hard to accept.”
He was picked up by the humane society as a stray a month later in June 2019. “Our staff named him ‘Ash,’” the director of development Deirdre Snyder said. “He needed to be treated for fleas, was missing hair on his hind end and had inflammation. He was treated with antibiotics and bathed with a special medical shampoo. He was in our shelter for about four months and then adopted out to a family Oct. 25, 2019.”
Nieves even checked with the shelter in 2019 and showed a picture of Kovu, but they told her that he had already been adopted by the family.
Then in June 2021, the family returned Kovu to the shelter because they said they were in danger of being evicted. Days later, Nieves saw his picture back on the website.
“I at first thought, ‘No way is this my dog,’” she said. “They had him under another name, ‘Ash.’ When I was sure it was him, I got so excited I was literally shaking. I called the Humane Society and told them ‘Ash’ is my dog, Kovu, who’s been missing for two years. I told them, ‘I’m on my way to get him right now, what do I need to bring?’”
She was nervous before meeting him again and worried he would not recognize her. But he started wagging his tail when he saw her, and immediately jumped on her. According to the humane society, “Upon seeing his long-lost mom, the previously shy and scared Kovu let out the most excited squeal we have ever heard!”
“Dogs have an incredible sense of smell and that is likely the first thing that brings the recognition. There are many videos online of military personnel coming home after a long time away and their dog will recognize them with a similar joy and excitement that Kovu had for Aisha,” Snyder said.
Kovu is back home now and will be 7 years old this Christmas.
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