A ‘wonder pup’ named Pip managed to find his own way home after he got lost in woodland in Bristol - taking a five-mile adventure of the city to arrive home while his owner launched a huge search for him.
Owner Libby Bowles lost sight of her pedenco dog when he chased squirrels in Leigh Woods. But despite posts in a lost and found group, she need not worried as Pip returned home 20 minutes before she did.
His adventure home took home across the Clifton Suspension Bridge, to their old home, outside Bristol Museum and finally back home.
Explaining what happened on September 18, Libby, aged 37, said she initally stood for half an hour whistling and calling when Pip went missing before spending an hour running around the route they usually take in the woods.
Then some friends told her they’d seen her dog run out of the woods and over the suspension bridge. A further report said he’s been seen at Clifton Cathedral, close to where they used to live.
But when Libby arrived at the former home, another sighting came in of Pip on Whiteladies Road, and then Park Street - by which point she knew her dog was on his way to their new home.
Libby said: “At first I thought ‘how on earth is he going to cross Bristol by himself?’
“But thankfully Pip has a good nose - he often takes me to his dog friends’ houses on our walks. The dog community in Bristol is amazing, so I put him in one of the groups and I got constant updates of where he was seen.
“He went back to our old flat, past Bristol Museum, literally all over Bristol. Eventually he was seen in the park near our house, so I breathed a sigh of relief because I knew he should be able to get home from there.
“I called our neighbours and they were all waiting for him when he got back. He apparently trotted round the corner fairly nonchalant. He had all his dog friends and lots of treats waiting for him.”
Pip once belonged to a hunter in Spain.
After being found on the streets, he was rescued and adopted by Libby, who works in sustainability education.
Pip is now a therapy dog, and is part of a programme called Read2Dogs - where children can read to him rather than adults to boost their literacy skills.
Libby said: “I used to be a primary school teacher and I think it’s such a valuable exercise, it has a profound effect on confidence in the classroom. I’m writing some books about Pip and his adventures, so kids can read to Pip about all his exciting stories.”