A beloved family pet is back home, after 9 days, wandering, out in the cold.
Sprout, a year-old Maltese-Yorkie mix, wasn't just any pet he was the perfect prescription for a woman recovering from breast cancer and now he's home where he belongs.
Don't let her smile fool you, Lisa Wu shudders as she remembers the pain of losing her little dog and wondering if she'd ever see him again.
"My heart was so broken, missing him. I just couldn't imagine. It was just part of your family. There was no barking-- a piece was definitely missing," Wu said.
Sprout was the shelter dog purchased by Lisa and her husband Reggie, to help her deal with a bout of breast cancer.
"Something happy to look forward to. Something to take my mind off everything. Somebody else to take care of. Instead of concentrating on me," Wu said.
On February 22nd, with the Wu's out of town, Sprout slipped his collar and ran from his dog-sitter. He vanished into the woods near their Voorhees home. Friends, neighbors, even strangers sprang into action.
"So many people just took the initiative and ran with it. Doing things- giving us fliers, giving us ideas, sending us psychics, sending us bloodhounds that they could smell," Reggie Wu said.
Anne Gwal lives nearly three miles from the Wus. She spotted the pooch out back of her home on Monday and raced outside with friends to bring him to safety.
"It took five of us to get him in the box, but we eventually got him in the box. We put a blanket around him, gave him some dog treats and then waited for the authorities to come by," Gwal said.
One of those rescuers had seen the Missing Dog fliers in the neighborhood. He made the connection and the Wus were quickly reunited with Sprout.
"He was a hot mess, but...it was him," Lisa said.
Now, after nine days in the cold and snow, Sprout is back where he belongs, in bed in front of the fireplace, getting his tummy rubbed.
"It's a furry child and he's back," Lisa said.
Lisa and Reggie Wu are still trying to coordinate a face-to-face meeting with the folks who took the time and effort to rescue little sprout.
They learned, in the midst of this emotional trying time, that man's best friend, wasn't their only friend.
A chance of rain by Tuesday morning.
Tuesday begins with clouds and a few early morning showers. Most of the rain will be light and around a tenth of an inch is expected. Sun and clouds by the afternoon. High 75.
Tuesday (75/60): A.M. Showers
Wednesday (74/54): Sunny/Mild
Thursday (76/56): Sunny/Nice
Friday (73/54): Sunny/Nice
Saturday (75/55): Sun/Clouds