A Boise man was reunited with his basset hound Wednesday evening after struggling to get his dog back from a local animal shelter.
Shaun Vincent had been worried sick after Fred went missing Halloween night.
He says its typical for his dog to wander off following a scent - as he usually comes back - but this time Fred didn’t.
Fortunately, Fred was taken to West Valley Humane Society the night he went missing but as of earlier Wednesday, Shaun was still having trouble taking his dog home.
“They said the best you can do is wait until he is available for adoption,” he said.
That’s what Shaun was told by staff after learning his lost basset hound had turned up at West Valley Humane Society.
Fred was featured on the agency's Facebook page under lost and found. Following instructions from the website, Shaun showed up at the facility the next morning with pictures proving he was the owner. However, he was told his name doesn’t match what is on the micro-chip.
“His chip? I did not know he had a chip,” says Shaun.
Shaun bought Fred off Craigslist back in 2012 and was unaware that he had been micro-chipped.
West Valley Humane Society couldn’t get a hold of the dog's original owners and said they had to keep Fred for a 5-day holding period and Shaun would then have the option to adopt back his own dog.
“At first they said you can adopt but there is no guarantee I get to adopt him first, like they couldn’t guarantee that someone else could adopt him first,” says Shaun.
West Valley refused to speak with KTVB on camera but the Idaho Humane Society, which is not affiliated with the shelter, says owners not realizing their dog has previously been micro-chipped until it ends up in a shelter is common.
“It is probably every day were dealing with a situation like that,“ says Idaho Humane Society spokesperson Allison Maier.
When buying a dog, Maier recommends getting as much paperwork as possible, just in case you find yourself in a similar situation as Shaun, trying to prove you’re the owner.
“A lot of people don’t think to get a bill of sale but that is really key, and then if you can get vet records as well that is helpful,” says Maier.
After sharing his story on the West Valley Humane Society’s Facebook page, Shaun has gotten a ton of support and says the shelter has since changed its tone.
“She said if you come in today with a notarized letter from a neighbor stating that Fred is yours then they will give him back to me if I pay to get his license renewed and get a rabies shot,” says Shaun.