In a story reminiscent of Red Dog ” who wandered through the Pilbara ” Nike was at Shenton Park 72km away from his home.
Luckily for 12-year-old ridgeback Nike ” a chronic wanderer ” local pound attendant Tracey recognised him on the dog refuge’s Facebook page.
‘I saw him on my Facebook page and the picture said ‘Jelicious needs foster care’,’ she said.
‘I recognised him straight away and said ‘that’s Nike!’.’
Nike’s owner John Leilua said he would get out frequently and head to Dome at Mandurah foreshore.
‘They have his water there ready for him,’ he said.
As soon as his partner Jodie Lucas saw he was missing, she called Ranger Bec and notified her.
‘I was so upset when I went down there and I couldn’t find him,’ Bec said.
‘I want to tell people to always have tags on their dog, always have them micro-chipped.’
The months dragged by and Ms Lucas had given up Nike for dead.
That was until Tracey gave the family a call and said, ‘I think we have found Nike.’ It was an emotional reunion for the couple and their other dog, Miami.
‘Without him Miami would cry,’ said. ‘I normally come home through the front door, but I snuck him in through the side door.
‘She must have smelt him because she bullrushed him.’
Mr Leilua has nicknamed the staff members at Mandurah pound ‘Nike’s godparents’.
‘Without them this wouldn’t be possible,’ he said. ‘Thank you so much for filling the missing piece in our family.’