January 23, 2014 Updated: January 23, 2014 at 2:52 pm
Boomer is home.
The 7-year-old black lab mix - who was in his owner's car when it was stolen Wednesday on Colorado Springs' west side - was found just a block or so from where the crime occurred.
Ronnie Dodge said that a craigslist ad for a found dog led him back to his beloved Boomer.
"A gentleman found him at Rudy's Bar-B-Q. He shared his lunch with him, and then he was still sitting there later, so he took him home."
Dodge looked all day Wednesday for his best friend and was distraught when he had no luck.
Then a friend looked on craigslist and noticed the ad.
"I called and asked if the dog he found wasn't neutered. He said no he wasn't. I asked if he had a dark blue collar, and he said yes. Then I asked if he answered to Boomer, and he said yes, he knew his name."
A thief took Dodge's car at an ATM in Red Rock Shopping Center at 31st Street and West Colorado Avenue about 9:15 a.m. Wednesday. Dodge had left his keys on the dashboard, and a man jumped in and drove off. Evidently he didn't want Boomer.
An employee at Rudy's restaurant told the rescuer that she had seen someone stop a car and pull the dog out, Dodge said.
Dodge, 37, spent hours with a friend driving neighborhoods looking for Boomer. "I even drove past Cheyenne Mountain Park, but didn't go in. And that is where the police later found my car."
Dodge called Boomer's rescuer about 10 p.m. and was reunited with Boomer soon afterward. "The man said he was a great dog.
"I was so happy, I cried and laughed," Dodge said.
But Boomer didn't act himself.
"He was upset and not happy, not wagging his tail. He looked dazed, and just stared out the window on the drive home."
When Boomer got home, he was treated to a bone and a hamburger.
Today, he is all woofs and wags.
Years ago, Dodge rescued the dog, who had survived a car crash that killed his owner in Wyoming.
"I've been sick for a while and in the hospital. I don't have family," Dodge said of his relationship with Boomer. "So he has been there for me."
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