Reunited: Missing Service Dog in Training Found After Heart-Wrenching Two-Month Search

In a heartwarming turn of events, Nova, a Bernese mountain dog in training to become a service dog, has been miraculously reunited with her owners after being lost for nearly two months. Robyn Simons-Sealy, who has had two strokes and struggles with mobility in icy conditions, had chosen Nova to be her service dog, a role that extended far beyond that of a family pet.

Tragedy struck on October 1, the day before Nova was set to take her first service dog test. In a Conifer parking lot, something frightened Nova, causing her to escape from her gear and run away. Simons-Sealy and her husband embarked on an extensive search, plastering the area with lost pet posters and clinging to hope.

As the weeks dragged on, with dangers like mountain lions and bears in the area, Simons-Sealy began to lose hope. But then, a Thanksgiving miracle occurred. Two hikers at Meyers Ranch Park discovered a scared and injured Nova, who had fallen off a cliff. While one hiker stayed with Nova, the other went to get help, bringing rangers to the scene. One ranger recognized Nova from the lost pet posters, facilitating a joyful reunion with her family.

Upon her return, Nova was 20 pounds lighter and had a severely broken front leg, which unfortunately means her journey to becoming a service dog must end. Despite the sad news that Nova’s leg needs amputation, Simons-Sealy expressed profound gratitude. “I won’t have a service dog and I’m okay with that. But I have her, and I wouldn’t give her up for anything,” she said. The family is simply thankful to have Nova back home, regardless of whether she has three or four legs.

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