ISELIN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Since early New Year’s Day, Rutgers University students and other New Jersey animal lovers had been searching for a missing service dog in training named Moe.
The dog was being trained to help a veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder. But on New Year’s morning, he got scared by fireworks and ran off.
As CBS2’s Tracee Carrasco reported, Moe was found safe Monday night thanks to CBS2 viewers.
There were sighs of relief — along with hugs and kisses — for 1-year-old Moe. The lovable Rhodesian ridgeback went missing since just after midnight on New Year’s Day from his home in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
“There were fireworks going off, so he was very spooked; super nervous, and he bolted out of the front door,” said Moe’s trainer, Nicole Sadori. “He’s not known to do that.”
And Moe is more than just a pet. He is a service dog in training, being fostered by Sadori as part of the Rutgers University Companion Animal Club.
He was about to be placed with a veteran suffering from PTSD until he ran away.
Since early Sunday, Sadori, members of the club, and program director Janice Wolfe had been putting up fliers searching for Moe. They turned to CBS2 for help, and shortly after CBS2’s story aired on Monday evening, Moe was spotted – in Edison, New Jersey miles away from home.
“A young couple saw him through a fence on the railroad tracks and they were nice enough to try and get onto the railroad tracks, onto the railroad bed and then after they found him,” Wolfe said. “They had seen the piece, so they called up, called Nicole, and said, ‘I think we found your dog.”
Moe had to be rescued by the Edison Fire Department, who cut a hole in a fence to get him out. His paws are cut up and he was shaken, but Wolfe said she’ll be forever grateful.
“I completely 100 percent credit CBS with this dog coming back,” Wolfe said. “He was in a bad spot. It’s raining, it’s horrible out, and he would have been dead.”
Moe will be kept at Garden State Veterinary Services for observation, and hopefully once he heals, he will go back to his training as a service dog.