Six years ago, a family in North Carolina lost both of their dogs.
"They just came up missing one day," Jeff Lott told TheBlaze. "We looked for them for weeks on end. We kind of assumed they had been stolen. Generally, they didn't get out and when they did, they kind of stayed nearby."
Since December 2007, the Lotts from Fayetteville, N.C., tried not to fear the worst.
"In this area there was a lot of dog fighting," he said. "We had prayed that they hadn’t fallen into being bait dogs. My wife always kept up hope."
After going missing for eight years, the Lott family was reunited with their dog Molly last week, after she was microchip scanned before she could have been put down. (Image source: Friends of Cumberland Co, NC Shelter Animals/Facebook)
After years of seeing dogs that looked like a similar black Lab mix or white boxer, thinking it could be their pets (but none of them turned out to be), the Lott family received an amazing break.
Last week, the Cumberland County Animal Shelter called Lott with news that Molly, the family's missing black Lab mix, had been found. The dog, 14 years old at this point, was brought in by someone wanting to have her euthanized due to her old age and bad hips.
"Given the dog’s age and condition, we were prepared to honor their request," the animal shelter wrote on Facebook. "However, we discovered a microchip when we scanned the dog prior to euthanasia. We called the microchip database and got contact information for the owner."
The true owner was not the one who brought the dog into the shelter. It was Lott.
"I was astonished," he said. "I had to go over it in my head a few times."
But he said he figured it had to be Molly, because the shelter called and contacted him about the dog by name.
"I said, 'Do not euthanize that dog,'" he recalled of the moment when he learned why Molly was at the shelter.
Within an hour, the Lotts were picking up their long lost companion.
"She was in deplorable condition," Lott said, explaining that she looked underfed and full of fleas.
Still, they brought her home with a celebratory bow.
A week later, Lott said Molly is fairing better and looks like his old pet, aside from the fact that she has a lot more grey hair now.
"She never stops wagging her tail," Lott said, noting how he thinks she might remember them.
From here forward, Molly will live out the remainder of her life with her first family, but Lott said the dog came at a good time for them too.
Lott said he lost his job last month, making difficult for his family.
"It was a big deal you know. It was kind of uplifting, considering we’ve been going through some tough times," he said. "It gave us a little something to …it helped out the whole situation."