WEST MIAMI-DADE (CBSMiami) — The discovery of an apparent rescue dog who was in distress and all alone near Miami International Airport on Friday morning prompted a massive search by Miami and Miami-Dade Police and Fire Rescue for the dog’s owner.
CBS4 was there as they scoured a canal on the east side of the airport at N.W. 18th St. and Perimeter Road. The Miami Police Marine Patrol unit conducted two separate searches. No one was found.
A police helicopter also joined the search and paramedics even set up a gurney at the scene in case someone was found in the water.
CBS4’s Peter D’Oench spoke with the man who spotted the dog at 8:30 a.m. while he was driving to an appointment. The animal is now being taken care of by Miami-Dade Animal Services.
“I was driving to my appointment and I saw the dog pulling on a leash and it looked really strange. I pulled over by a bus stop and I walked over towards the dog and got down on my hands and knees and the dog ran probably about 200 yards away from me,” explained Laurence Moser. “When I saw it, it looked almost like a puppy,” he said. “It was weird. It was a little dog and it had a service harness on it and it said service dog. I took the dog towards the canal that was adjacent to a field and I walked around looking for the owner. I took him to the canal and he didn’t want to go in the water like he was pretty afraid.”
Moser said he felt compelled to stop.
“People in Miami they often don’t stop for stray dogs and people in need,” he said. “But whenever I see people or someone in need I stop and I am glad I did. Now I just want to know who the owner is. My thoughts initially were for the dog and when I realized it was a service dog I knew that the owner would never let the service dog go wander like that.”
“It looks like a mixed breed, female, that is black and brown and may have some pit bull in it,” he said. “It is not quite a puppy. It is about a year old or a little younger.”
Miami-Dade Police Detective Chris Thomas said the dog did not have a chip, which Animal Services said was unusual for that type of dog.
The shelter name given to her by animal services is Lily.
Miami-Dade Animal Services said the dog had the letters “ESD” for emotional support dog on its vest.
Thomas said police do not know who the owner is.
Anyone with information should call 311.