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How I Found My Dog
Mattie: Lost, Found, Lost…and Found Again
From right: Mattie when Rebecca found her; visiting Grandpa; and one year after she went missing the second time.

I found Mattie in February of 2009 in Brownsville, Tex., where I was working temporarily. She was in the middle of a very busy road, dodging cars. I pulled over about the time a school bus was coming right at her. I got out and this matted-up mess came running into my arms. You could barely see she was a dog through all the hair, hence the name Mattie.  There was nowhere to take her but back to the hotel, where staff and other guests fell in love with the happy playful mess of fur. 

In the morning, I took her to the Brownsville Pet Hospital for a full examination and shots. The vet was very sweet. I told him how I came across her and he gave me the “good Samaritan” discount. They also helped me remove the matting that hung over her nose making it hard for her to breath. 
PetSmart couldn’t groom her until her shots had set in, so I attempted the task alone. There was a chain wrapped around her neck when I found her, the matting was so bad there was mold growing in it. In two days, I took her back to PetSmart, where she received a proper haircut. My boss came to visit and was so touched by her he bought a travel carrier so I could bring her home, which I did. When the job was finished I took her home to Sherman, Tex. Mattie, however became a frequent flyer with me after that. I took her anywhere I could.
She immediately took to everyone including my other dogs. Frankie, my Pug, and she were inseparable. She went with me to visit Grandpa at the nursing home where the other residents and staff gave her lots of attention and she loved it. She and Grandpa would play and then she would just lie on his bed so he could pet her. He would say, “You’re a pretty good puppy dog.” 
On August 6, 2009, a storm came through and took out my fence. I wasn’t home at the time, out of town at another job. I had too many back-to-back flights this trip to take Mattie with me. My roommate didn’t know the fence was down and let the dogs out in the backyard. Mattie and Frankie went missing.  Frankie was discovered across the highway, but no sign of Mattie. 
When I got home, we went everywhere looking for her. My niece and nephew went with me door to door around the neighborhood asking and showing pictures of her. My sister came home on leave and we continued the search for Mattie putting up missing signs everywhere we could. We never found her and Grandpa would often ask, “Have you found that puppy dog yet?” and I would have to say, “No Grandpa.” I vowed to never give up trying though.
On July 22, 2010, my Grandpa passed away. We buried him in Houston on July 28. When we returned home the next day, I received a call from a lady named Dawn in Roberta, Okla. She said, “I think I found your dog Mattie.” I asked where I could meet her so we met at the Texas Travel Center at the Oklahoma border and there she was holding my Mattie, a mess but it was Mattie. Dawn told me my dog had wondered into her pasture on July 26, starved and with mange but happy. Turns out, Dawn not only has the same name as my sister, but also works for a dog rescue. I couldn’t hold back the tears because I immediately knew in my heart Grandpa found Mattie and told her to come home and that is where she is now, home, awaiting a new haircut.



Rebecca sent us an update on September 24, 2010: “Turns out she didn’t come home alone; Mattie had five puppies one month after she came home. She looks much better now too! Her fur has all grown back. She is a great mama. The black and white puppy was named Larry after Grandpa, we call them Grandpa's puppies and Mattie is our little Miracle Mattie.”

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Submitted by geneva | September 28 2010 |

i always knew you had the the biggest heart and was never afraid to show it. that story was wonderful and it was was just what my heart needed to hear today. becks you really are an inspiration and i am very fortunate to know you.keep us updated on mattie and her adventures and be safe in your travels. love you geneva

Submitted by Becky | September 28 2010 |

Mattie is a special dog and when you meet her you feel the love she has. I am glad she was able to inspire and give hope to people. Gevie you and your family are always close in my heart no matter how far we may be from eachother.

Submitted by Bri | September 28 2010 |

Miracle Mattie aka Miracle! That's all i call her! I'm so happy she is home with her wonderful Mommie Becky!

Submitted by Laurie Tanner | September 28 2010 |

Becky, This was an awesome story. I sat here reading it to my husband and had to stop frequently to wipe my tears. It was great to hear some 'happy' news from someone in your family. Your Grampa must be so honored up there in Heaven looking down and seeing his namesake. You are a very talented writer. God Bless you, The Tanner's from Michigan

Submitted by Gayle in Saginaw | October 4 2010 |

OMG! What a tear-jerker story. I couldn't stop crying. I am so happy that Maddie is back home, that she has puppies who will be loved properly, and of course, I hope you will have her spayed, so she will come back if she accidentally gets out. What a lovely dog story. You are a very good writer and should do more of it.
Thank you for sharing your story with everyone.

Submitted by Becky | October 4 2010 |

Thank you! With the tears come the joy, Grandpa just wanted me to smile again I think.... and yes she will be spayed lol the puppies are great though and very happy to have them around right now!

Submitted by Cheryl | October 6 2010 |

I can see there is a schnauzer in Mattie and being a mini schnauzer lover I know Mattie had lots of personality!!! While she was gone I am sure that terrier spirit was noticeably absent! How wonderful you were able to reunite!

Submitted by Debbie Wright | November 22 2010 |

I am a lucky owner of one of Matties PUPS! Her name was Zowie now EBONY I was asking for her birthday and came along this amazing story.I knew Ebony was smart and special,but her family history is a Miracle in its self!Ebony is doing well and very smart! The blessing is on me.

Submitted by Melanie | September 12 2012 |


I love it that you posted Mattie's story on here.... after today, however, I think you need to get her a GPS collar!!!

Love Ya!!

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