'Christmas miracle': Long-lost dog found in Bend

Owner was visiting, will return for happy reunion

BEND, Ore. - A Christmas miracle occurred at the Humane Society of Central Oregon when Gracie, a 4-year-old border collie mix, arrived Thursday after being missing for more than nine months.

The owner was visiting Bend in March when her dog escaped March 13th. The dog had a microchip identification that confirmed the dog’s owner.

Tears of joy and words of disbelief were heard when the owner was told her dog was found, shelter officials said. Gracie will be reunited with her family next Wednesday, when the family can make the drive from Southern California to Bend.

Gracie was first spotted a month ago at the Knott Landfill, near the HSCO shelter in southeast Bend, and consistently seen the last four days.

Andy Cleland, a U.S. Department of Agriculture wildlife specialist, set a live trap in hopes of catching the dog in the frigid temperatures and deep snow.

The trap was checked three times a day, and Thursday morning, Gracie was found trapped inside. Shelter officials said she is in relatively good condition, for a dog on her own for nine months.

In a desperate attempt to find her beloved dog before she had to leave Bend, the owner reported her dog missing to the shelter, put up posters and posted ads on Craigslist and social media. She called in monthly to update her lost report at HSCO, and checked the shelter’s website every other day to see if her beloved dog had been found.

Reuniting families with their pets is one of the services that brings joy to the Humane Society of Central Oregon. For more information, visit

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