Missing Nebraska dog reunited with family two years later

13-year-old 'Spook' resting comfortably back with his owner.
13-year-old 'Spook' resting comfortably back with his owner.(Ellis Wiltsey)
Published: Jul. 1, 2022 at 4:01 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - After facing a year of hardships, a Nebraska family finally got what it calls a much-needed win. Their beloved family beagle-mix was found after it was missing for two years.

Dawn VanArsdale said it was a day she thought might not ever come. It seems fate was at work as a co-worker scrolling on Facebook showed her a picture of a dog that matched the description of her missing dog, Spook, finally found.

Friday, 13-year-old Spook is resting comfortably in a bed at Dawn’s work as a groomer. A place he’d been many times before going missing and a place he’s now spoiled with attention, after being found.

“We just really needed a win, a big win and even if it’s only for a week for a month and if he doesn’t have much time he’s with us,” VanArsdale said.

Spook went missing two years ago after he didn’t come back to the house following Dawn’s dad’s birthday party.

“We put it everywhere, everywhere we could think of, every vet within probably 40 miles went to the humane society and walked them ourselves, my dad probably walked the property line every couple of days for months,” VanArsdale said.

Monday, Dawn’s co-worker saw a photo of a dog she thought might match Spook’s description on a veterinarian’s Facebook page. Dawn said even before she knew she was already in the car. When she arrived at the clinic, it didn’t take long for Spook to recognize her.

“They finally took me back there and as soon as I was like ‘hey spook’ he just immediately was like ‘oh I know her,’” VanArsdale said.

Sadly, he’s in rough shape. He has incredible difficulty walking around anymore and is suffering from seizures. Most recently, veterinarians at Kansas State found a tumor.

Dawn said technically Spook is her dad’s dog, but he suffered a stroke and is still at the hospital. She’s taken him to see her dad, saying hopefully they’ll get better together.

“I mean he’s a lot whiter now, and a lot smaller but...I mean you can’t give up on your family members,” VanArsdale said.

The family said they have just been flooded with love and messages since Spook returned home but the cost of medical care has been overwhelming. They have set up a GoFundMe page to cover some costs.

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