Lenexa family’s dog, missing for nearly a month, found just in time for Thanksgiving

LENEXA, Kan. -- Shady the Chesapeake Bay retriever is finally back home in Lenexa after being missing for nearly a month.

The 60-pound dog is playing, running around her backyard and showing her owner a lot of love.

“I am just just relieved and very, very happy and thankful. I think she’s a little tired though,” Jessica Costello said.

You would be tired, too, if you’ve gone through what this pooch recently experienced.

On Oct. 27, Costello said she and Shady went to Shawnee Mission Dog Park for their usual fun.

"We were having a good time. She was out with a bunch of other dogs similarly just swimming,” Costello said.

However, after splashing twice in the lake, Shady never came back.

"I couldn’t find her anywhere. I was so terrified,” Costello said.

Terrified because the 2-and-a-half-year-old dog she’s had since she was a pup was missing. Costello posted fliers, called several shelters, searched around town and online, but no sign of Shady.

"My kids went looking for her. My husband’s calling places. I just couldn’t believe it. She’s never just run off,” Costello said.

But bright and early Tuesday morning, Costello received a wonderful phone call: Shady had been found!

Maintenance workers found the curious canine creeping around a baseball field about a mile away from the Costello family’s home.

”We kind of lucked out that those guys were able to confine her, lock the gate and keep her on the baseball field until her owner arrived. They said they had seen here there off and on for the last three weeks. I just wonder if she was trying to make her way back home or if she was just waiting for her owner, hoping she would find her,” said Officer Ben Lancaster with Lenexa Animal Control.

”I don’t know what distracted her from the dog park. I’m just glad she’s fine. We need to fatten her up because she’s a little skinny. My family is coming for Thanksgiving on Wednesday, so we’re all just so happy that she will be here with us. She will get plenty of leftovers,” Costello said.