Luna the German Shepherd-Husky mix was reunited with her owner today after going overboard and being lost at sea for five-weeks. Luna was found on an island about two miles from the spot where she went into the water by U.S. Navy staff on the island.
Nick Hayworth was out of town when his dog Luna was first found, but he’s back and was he was reunited with Luna, the dog he thought he would never see again. When Luna was found, it was Nick’s best friend who picked her up from the airport, reports ABC News on March 18.
The reunion happened on the dock and the news media was there to capture the moment on film, which is seen in the video above. The 1-year-old German Shepard dog had spent her first year of life out on that fishing boat with Nick, so she was very comfortable on the ship. He was pulling in Lobster traps when Luna was discovered missing. For two days he stayed in the area and combed the ocean.
News Max reports how devastated Hayworth was at the time the dog went missing. “They were pulling in their traps, and one minute Luna was there, and the next minute she was gone,” explained Sandy DeMunnik, spokeswoman for Naval Base Coronado on San Clemente Island, where Luna was found. The island is located roughly 70 miles from San Diego. She told the media that “They looked everywhere for her. They couldn’t see her. The water was dark, and she’s dark.”
He searched that island when the dog was first missing, as this was the closest land to where Luna would have gone overboard. The military staff stationed on that island helped the distraught Hayworth search for his dog when it first went missing, but it was to no avail.
Then staff on the island spotted the dog five weeks later and since there are no domestic dogs on the island, they knew whose dog this was. They called to Luna and she jumped into the jeep with the staff. Hayworth was beside himself when he got the call, but he was out of town, so his friend picked him up and cared for Luna until he returned. That is where today’s tearful reunion came in.
“It was really devastating to go from having this dog next to me every minute of my life to all of sudden, she’s gone in a flash,” Hayworth told ABC News. Now that he is reunited with his dog, Hayworth told ABC, it’s “probably the happiest I’ve ever been in my life to have my best friend back.”
ABC News also reports that “the distraught owner combed the Pacific Ocean for days, with even the U.S. Navy joining the search on land, air and sea. Hayworth eventually gave up hope.” He made the decision that it was time to mourn the dog that wasn’t coming back. “RIP Luna, you will be missed,” Hayworth posted on Facebook. “I was heartbroken. I presumed she was dead,” he said.
Luna somehow made that two mile swim to that island and for the next five weeks she lived off of mice and fish. A wildlife biologist at the San Diego Zoo examined Luna and found her a bit undernourished, but healthy.