Missing dog rescued after living in Sussex woods for six years

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A missing dog who had been living in a Sussex woodland for six years has been rescued.

Rose went missing from Ashurst Wood in 2017, just 24 hours after she was adopted, and was finally rescued on Saturday, December 9.

Now aged 12, with a grey muzzle and eyebrows, a concerned member of the public spotted her near Crawley Down at the end of November and enquired about her in the local area.

She learned that locals were aware of the dog who they said had been living alone in the area for years.

A missing dog who had been living in a Sussex woodland for six years has been rescued. Photo: Lost Dog Recovery UK SouthA missing dog who had been living in a Sussex woodland for six years has been rescued. Photo: Lost Dog Recovery UK South
A missing dog who had been living in a Sussex woodland for six years has been rescued. Photo: Lost Dog Recovery UK South

Lost Dog Recovery UK South were contacted and set up a food and camera to gather more information. After establishing a feeding routine over the next few days, they were able to lure Rose into a trap with some warm roast chicken.

The senior Patterdale was ‘shocked and scared but gentle’, and was immediately taken to the safety of kennels.

Here it was discovered that she had a microchip and had been living in the wild just six miles from her home after going missing in March, 2017.

A spokesperson for Lost Dog Recovery UK South said: “Although we will never know when exactly she came to settle in Crawley Down, what we do know is that she is finally safe, and now will not spend the rest of her senior years fending for herself in the cold and wet.”

Devastatingly, there will be ‘no happy reunion’ for Rose, Lost Dog Recovery said, as her owners have moved away and are no longer in a position to take her back.

“After the initial shock, our absolute joy at finding a long-lost dog is tinged with sadness as there is no ‘happy reunion’ for Rose; she never got the chance to know the love of her family.

“They are thrilled she is safe and unhurt and, of course, sad they aren’t able to take her back. She will be going to a rescue who can give her what she needs and care for her in her old age.”

Lost Dog Recovery UK South is run by volunteers who specialise in recapturing ‘difficult to catch’ dogs.

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