Mandi Smith's 5-month-old puppy disappeared from the family's Fort Campbell, Ky., yard 18 months ago. So when she got a call saying Pooka had turned up in northern New Mexico, she says she thought someone was playing a trick on her.
But it was no joke.
The now 2-year-old Chihuahua-dachshund mix was found wandering the streets in Espanola on Jan. 12, and was traced back to her military family by a microchip that Smith says had been installed just days before she went missing.
Smith and the dog were reunited at Albuquerque's Sunport on Wednesday.
Nina Stively of the Espanola Valley Humane Society says shelter workers have no idea how Pooka got to New Mexico. She says Pooka had recently had puppies and was still nursing when she was found. But attempts to find her puppies were unsuccessful.