Shannon Boothman was overjoyed to be reunited with her dog Itska in Port Alberni on Sunday after desperately searching for her missing best friend for over two months. (photo courtesy of Shannon Boothman)

Dog reunited with Tofino owner, months after being taken from beach

Shannon Boothman ‘ecstatic’ at pet’s return after a tip leads to social media search

After more than two months desperately searching for her missing dog, Tofino resident Shannon Boothman was delighted to have her best friend back in her arms.

Itska vanished near Tonquin Beach on Nov. 2, and Boothman and police believed at the time that two tourists had taken the dog, thinking it was in need of care.

Boothman said she received a phone call around 9 a.m. on Sunday from a man who said he had Itska and planned to return him.

“He’s driving up right now from Victoria to give him back,” Boothman told the Westerly News on Sunday afternoon. “I’m really happy. I’m ecstatic. I can’t believe that I’m actually getting him back because it’s hard not to give up hope after so long.”

She sent a photo to the Westerly News around 5 p.m. of her hugging her returned companion.

READ MORE: Tourists allegedly take dog from Tofino, owner pleads for help getting it back

The story of Itska’s disappearance spread rapidly through social media back in November.

Boothman said she received an anonymous phone call from a person late on Christmas Eve, who gave her the name of an Oak Bay man believed to have the dog.

Boothman said she contacted the Oak Bay Police, who investigated and found Itska, but did not determine the people who were caring for him had criminal intent and handed the file over to the SPCA.

“The people felt they were caring for the dog,” said Oak Bay Deputy Chief Ray Bernoties. “You aren’t apparently allowed to just care for someone else’s dog, whether you like it or not.”

Boothman was able to find the man’s mother on Facebook, and began messaging the woman’s friends.

The man called her on Sunday morning and assured he would deliver the dog immediately. She said he admitted he had seen the news she was searching for her pet.

“My heart kind of goes out to him. I think he was well intentioned, but when he saw all the posts and everything and how desperately I was searching for him, he should have stepped forward a lot earlier than now,” Boothman said.

“Because that’s actually very negatively impacted my life. But, none of that matters right now.”

READ MORE: Search continues for missing Tofino dog allegedly taken by tourists

Once she has him back, she said she plans to take immediate steps to ensure she does not lose him again.

“The first thing I’m going to do when I get a vet appointment is get my dog microchipped.”

READ MORE: Tofino welcomes much needed veterinarian to town



andrew.bailey@westerlynews.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RANCH MUSINGS: Encouraging the next generation of ranchers

I haven’t written about the lifestyle aspect of ranching for a while but it’s been on my mind lately

Falcons wrestlers leave it all on the mat at zone and provincial championships

Three of five Falcons wrestlers medal at provincials

FOREST INK: Forestry practices and mine reclamation in B.C.

Mine reclamation is certainly a topic worth paying attention to

After taste of spring, Sunday skiff a reminder winter still in forecast

Small patches of flurries are forecast in Williams Lake throughout the day Sunday, Feb. 23.

Secwepemc names being proposed for new pedestrian bridge in Williams Lake

Mayor Walt Cobb said he thinks it’s a great idea

VIDEO: 2020 BC Winter Games wrap up in Fort St. John as torch passes to Maple Ridge

More than 1,000 athletes competed in the 2020 BC Winter Games

Still six cases of COVID-19 in B.C. despite reports of Air Canada passenger: ministry

Health ministry wouldn’t comment on specific flight routes

Violent ends to past Indigenous protests haunt Trudeau government

Trudeau adopted a more assertive tone Friday, insisting the barricade must come down

HIGHLIGHTS: Day one and two at the 2020 BC Winter Games

Athletes had sunny – but cold – weather to work with in Fort St. John

B.C. money laundering inquiry to begin amid hopes for answers, accountability

Eby argued that most B.C. residents already know the previous government, at best, turned a blind eye

Blockades remain in place as Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs returning to B.C.

Hereditary Chief Woos said they are ready to engage in nation-to-nation talks with the B.C.

Tyler Toffoli scores twice, Canucks crush Bruins 9-3

Stecher, Miller each add three points for Vancouver

Most Read