Loving AnimalsSmiles

Family Reunites With Missing Dog 3 Years After She Ran Away, After Somehow Traveling Over 1,000 Miles

If you think long-lost loved ones reunite only in the movies, think again.

A family in Delray Beach, Florida, just reunited with their missing dog, Bella—three years later and right in time for Thanksgiving, WPTV reports. Talk about something to be thankful for, right?

Three years ago, the dog’s owner, Bill Gerstein, brought Bella to work in Fort Lauderdale, as he usually did. But on Friday, December 13, 2013, he let her outside—and she got away. They searched and searched, but nothing.

Gerstein and his wife have six kids. Here’s one of them with Bella before she disappeared.

After three years without a trace of their dog, the Gerstein family had given up on the hope of ever finding Bella. But on Nov. 22, 2016, just two days before Thanksgiving, an animal shelter found her—in Paterson, New Jersey! Gerstein booked a flight the minute the shelter called him.

“I picked her up, she was shaking uncontrollably for 10 minutes,” Gerstein told WPTV of his reunion with Bella, a Maltese-Pomeranian mix. “I think she was in shock that we were reunited.” We’ll say!

Apparently, a family in New Jersey had Bella for about nine months before she ran away, and that’s when the shelter came into play. Bella was wearing a microchip, which linked her to the Gersteins and ended up leading to their reunion.

Of course, however, no one knows how Bella made it the 1,000 miles from Florida to New Jersey in the first place.

“I call it the Thanksgiving miracle,” Gerstein said. “And I say that everyone should get their animals chipped. Because without that, there would have been no prayer of seeing the dog again.”

RELATED:   Corgi Puppy Doesn't Get Or Know What To Make Of This Tiny Pumpkin

There’s a Facebook page about Bella, and one post on the page pays homage to Ashley Abregu, the woman who found Bella on the run in New Jersey and brought her to the shelter.

Here is Bella back home with Gerstein.

And the rest of the family.

We could not be happier that they were reunited at long last!

Just look at that face! All cleaned up.

One thing’s for sure: Bella is very loved.

And it looks like she’s pretty happy to be home.