Most Recent Possible Sightings

Confirmed Sighting: May 9 2012, north Chevy Chase. [2011]December 11, neighborhood outside Colombia Country Club. October 20, Colombia Country Club. September 14, Candy Cane City and into Rock Creek Park. September 7 or 8, Brookville and Shepherd in Chevy Chase, and then back south on Connecticut to Chevy Chase circle (where she is getting water, we believe). August 28th, on Thornapple in Chevy Chase, and then headed south on Connecticut!

(For other sightings, see archive at the bottom of the page.)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Tonight's Track - updated with image

The track tonight was a big loop around Chevy Chase. Huge thanks to Jeanne and Lisa S. who walked tonight with Sam and Salsa. (If you work with me, and you are reading this, ask Jeanne all about it if you want to know what a track is like.)

Sam is cautiously optimistic, because Sass is looping back to places - not just wandering aimlessly. She's got water and food sources, but I wish she'd stop crossing large, busy streets!

For volunteers who can flyer tomorrow: Once we have that map from Sam of tonight's route, we'll have a better idea of where to target, but we're headed to Chevy Chase.


And if you're wondering what a track is like, here's what Jeanne wrote about it:

It was a privilege to go on the track, to meet Sam and Salsa and watch them in action, and to learn from Lisa, who has lots of experience with dogs (and their people) through her work with Homeward Trails' rescues. It is quite exciting when Salsa picks up Sassafras's scent. What follows is a suspenseful adventure through some beautiful and upscale neighborhoods, thanks to Sassafras's champagne tastes. She, and consequently we, even made a stop at the Chevy Chase Country Club. All of this has the added benefit, if you are a walker and explorer as I am, of great exercise, education, and interesting encounters with helpful people. The best part, though, is knowing that Sassafras has been seen, can be tracked, has food and water sources, and remains safe to be found and returned to her family.

New track underway

Caught the scent.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Plan for Tomorrow

We're having a little trouble with the camera, but are hoping to replace the battery tonight and further hoping that clears up the problem.

It looks like Sam and Salsa will be able to come out tomorrow night to check on the two possible sightings we've had. Either of those being positive would bring us closer to Sassafras.

Updates here have been brief because it has been an extremely busy week for both of us, but we are trying to keep it all up to date!

On NBC News - June 29, 2011

NBC was out doing an interview today. The story that aired is here. Video below:

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Two sightings today?

There were two possible Sass sightings called in today, both over near where we first picked up her trail: one on Aberfoyle this a.m. and one on Leland tonight. I wasn't able to get over to Aberfoyle this morning - and believe me, it is horrible when that happens, but it does. Lisa S. helped me out by going over tonight and talking to those neighbors. She also helped when the Leland call came. We both went over to call and talk to the neighbors but she didn't show herself. It started to rain, and then thunder and lightening chased us home.

But maybe, just maybe, we now have some good idea of what her territory might be.

Fingers crossed.

No Sass again at the camera last night

It was visited by a raccoon, a small dog on a leash, and a cat named Paws. Many thanks to Dave and Leon who are taking on the morning monitoring of the camera. Still hoping to see Sass back there soon.

Monday, June 27, 2011

No sass on the camera last night

There were a cat and a couple healthy raccoons last night... Maybe Sass will return this evening. That would be a big help.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Utah & Barnaby: Not Sass

The tracker checked, and the Utah & Barnaby sighting was not Sassafras. We're glad to know this, even if it wasn't the answer we were hoping for.

We're still hoping for another person to call in with a AU/Tenley sighting, so we could figure out when during the week Sass was there. It will give us a clue as to how fast she's covering ground. Also, we hope she returns to that water bowl that we know she's visited twice!

We owe our volunteers this weekend a HUGE thank-you. There were over 500 flyers that went up!

New Sighting at Utah & Barnaby?

A woman called to say she might have seen Sass walking on the NE side of Utah at Barnaby about 45 minutes ago. This is only a few blocks from where this all started for us, so Sass might be on her loop of the Chevy Chase area!

Keep your eyes open, please!

Camera checked this morning- no Sass :-(

Looks like a cat was there around 4:30 AM and maybe a dog around 4:50... neither was Sass as best as I can tell. (Jeff)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Quick Update: Tonight's Track - Out and Back to Tenley Campus

Tonight's (6/25/2011) track ended up back at the Tenley campus of American University, where we have now set up a camera and hope to catch a picture of our Sassafras in action!

The track went south along Wisconsin, west on Massachusetts (by the main AU campus), north on 44th/45th to River Road and then back to where we started. Sam, the tracker, thinks this might be a fresher scent than the one followed to the campus before, but it's impossible to really tell... She definitely felt it was worth setting up a camera...Really would welcome a fresh report of sighting from human eyes as well, and with all the flyers put up in the neighborhood today maybe that will happen...

Here's the GPS log... track started and ended more or less at the "feeding station" (top center):

On Track

Jeff just called to say they have picked up Sass' scent and they are on the move (south!).

Volunteer driver FOUND - 7PM tonight (Saturday)

We're doing another track tonight, starting at 7PM from where the last track left off (the Tenley campus of American University).

Generally it's great to have a car following along so when the tracking team ends up miles away, they can quickly get back to their cars.

Many thanks.... Jeff and Beth

-p.s. We feel very fortunate to have had 8 great volunteers today helping out with flyering... simply amazing.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Last night's track & Where Sass Found Water

Last night we ended the track on the Tenley Campus (not main). She circled that campus at least twice, and found water the grounds keeping staff leave out for visiting dogs.

I got to speak to the man in charge over there, and Dave was wonderfully helpful. He took flyers and business cards and I believe he and the rest of the staff there will be on the lookout for our girl, Sassy.

This would be a wonderful spot for you to go back to, Sass! Are you reading this?


Last night's track

Here it is.

Click on the image to make larger. The yellow is last night's track, which terminated at American University... see the big circle near the top left corner. The circle indicates that Sass made that loop (the tracking dog followed that path).

Blue is from the track Monday evening.

A good suggestion for reaching out at American

An email just came in with this suggestion:
I don't know if AU runs summer school classes or not, but their media outlets might
help you get the word out to students and faculty about your dear pup.

A list of Student Media links is on this page of the AU web site:

Radio contact:

I sent an email to the radio station. We would welcome any help in following up with the links on the web site, etc... -Jeff

Thursday, June 23, 2011

She's a Wanderer: A Quick Update on Tonight's Track to American University

We'll have the map of the track up later tonight or tomorrow, but we followed Sassafras' scent for 4.69 miles, ending up on the campus of American University. We stopped after about 2 hours, because the tracking dog was getting tired (she is being treated for cancer), and because we'd just figured out where Sassafras had found a water supply. It seemed like a good note to end on for the evening.

Step by step - each one bringing us a little closer to Sassy. We hope!

Thursday Plans

We are still waiting and hoping for the phone to ring. Sam and Salsa answered a call last night to go help find a dog lost & in distress, so we are picking up our track tonight. Thursday thanks begin with our friend, Michelle, who will be following us tonight in a car so we can keep the search going no matter where it takes us. Also, our thanks to Betsy, who has volunteered her healing skills.

Jeff and I would have been broken by the loss of our girl and the stress of this search a long time ago if it wasn't for the help and support we've received from friends - old and new. We thank you.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wednesday Thank-You

Our thanks to Mindy, Dave, Chris, Kerstin, Kara, and Jen who have all put up, or will be soon putting up flyers during the heat of the day.

Also, to Mack from Royal Pedigree Pet Care who I called because his business was near our Sass track, I hoped he'd be sympathetic, and I am sometimes downright shameless when it comes to asking for help in getting my dog back. He was not only sympathetic, he was incredibly proactive in getting the word out. He also spotted our car last night (with flyers taped to the side) and flagged us down, so we got to shake his hand.

You cannot comprehend how much it means to us.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Update on Chevy Chase/Rock Creek Sighting activities alert calls are now going out to folks living within 1.2 miles from the recent sighting.

A couple of volunteers are out putting up flyers and Beth and I will be out this evening. I also placed a few flyers this morning. (11:30 PM update, flyers placed by folks today are on this new map.)

Sam, the tracker's, advice and thoughts on flyering and what we're looking for are:

I would shotgun the posters out (fan-like) from where we stopped, on up Brookville and the surrounding neighborhoods for at least 2 miles. Eventhough the track didn't go down in the park last night, that was a very small snapshot in time compared to when she was seen on Saturday. She may well be going down there for water on a regular basis and may even have a den down there. I agree that there are still a lot of questions that need to be resolved with regard to her travel pattern and where she is eating. We had some evidence last night on the track that she may be feeding herself at least part of the time by hunting small critters.

Here's a log of last night's track (click for larger version):

A number of people are also sending out information on listservs and using social media, which we greatly appreciate. We're hoping to find time to do more of that soon...

Sam is planning to return tomorrow at 6PM to continue tracking... hopefully by then we'll have some more recent sightings to follow.

On a separate note, an ad will appear in StreetSense tomorrow (the local paper run and distributed by homeless people in Washington DC area), that may also generate a number of sightings.

More soon and thank you!

Jeff (and Beth)

CONFIRMED: The track last night

The call that came on Sunday was pretty unremarkable. The couple that called had been in their car, and only saw the dog for a second early Saturday morning. They didn't see a collar, didn't really think about it much, except to think it was unusual to see a loose dog in their neighborhood, but on Sunday they were out and about and saw one of our posters, so they called.

Jeff and I had pretty much decided it was too thin to call the tracker down. Then, on Monday, I got another call, much more concrete, and we decided we might as well ask Sam to come down. That concrete call was negative for Sassafras, but without it, we might never have followed up on the sighting we thought was weak.

When Sam told me Salsa had a scent, I was a bit stunned. We'd never found a scent before. We had no confirmation of a sighting at all since the night Sass was lost. Now we had confirmation she was alive. I didn't call Jeff to tell him for about 20 minutes. I kept thinking it might be a mistake and didn't want to get his hopes up.

But it wasn't a mistake. We followed Sass' track around the neighborhood, were able to make some educated guesses where she stopped to get a drink and chase an animal.

Now we need to get the word out through flyers, robo calls and people in the park and on the street to ask and hand out business cards. Please let us know if you can help!

This is a very different kind of hope than what we have had.

Monday, June 20, 2011

We've picked up a scent! Need Chevy Chase volunteers!

Sam and Salsa just finished a tracking right now from a sighting at 32nd Pl and Worthington on Saturday (Washington DC)... Sam (the tracking dog) was not pulling very hard, meaning the scent is not today, but this is a lead!

We're looking for area volunteers to help with putting up signs and if you know of neighborhood listservs that would be good.... We'll have details of the track soon... Went from 32pl and Worthington to Brookville and Thornapple. See the star burst on our map.

More soon.

Pierce Mill / Rock Creek Park

There definitely seems to be a beagle running around RCP, and we got another call this afternoon with a sighting. Sean saw the dog by the bathrooms at Pierce Mill, and was able to give a good enough description of where the dog was that we've decided to call in a tracker to determine if this was Sassafras.

We're also working on getting permission to check on the sighting reported yesterday, farther north along RCP, so we hope the tracker can check both places tonight.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

10,017 Page Views

This blog has now passed 10,000 page views... Still hoping that the next pair of eyes will be the one that reunites us with Sass.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Crank call at 11:30PM - Why?

Just received call that asked if I had lost a beagle, I said yes, caller said "I found it" and hung up... I call back and say "you just called and said you found a beagle" to which caller says "no."

Why do folks do this?

4th & Rhode Island (Franklin?)

A Gentleman called tonight to say he saw Sassafras being walked by a young Caucasian man over the weekend. We were unable to ask him any particulars about the size of the dog he saw, etc., because he disconnected. He indicated he would be watching and if he saw the man and dog again he would call us and the police.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Upper Rock Creek Park - Wish It Was Sass?

Two very nice walkers this morning called that they saw a beagle walking around the parking lot on Beach Road (north of where it hits Wise Road) in Rock Creek Park. Their description was close enough that I went to check it out. I met with them at the parking lot and, unfortunately, don't think that they saw Sass. The dog they saw had a neon orange collar, which could not be mistaken from the one Sass had when she was lost...

The callers names were Hope and Joy... sure could use some more of both in this search.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Another possible sighting? Florida Avenue Park

A caller tonight said he thought he saw our Sassy with a woman (I think he called her "Precious") at "Florida Avenue Park" (I confirmed this name with him, but it doesn't bring up anything on the map) today. He said he'd try to get more information to us tomorrow, but he thought that she sold dogs. This call was extremely hard to hear - the connection was terrible and he was standing next to traffic.

This is one of those tough calls - it sounded as if it was from a kid, it was hard to hear, and the information wasn't specific enough for us to do any real follow-up on our own. If anyone has ever heard of a woman selling dogs in the neighborhood, please let us know!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Shout Out of the Day: Faye

Faye, who runs the Lost and Found work at the Prince George's shelter, has been very professional, responsive, and helpful. We filed a lost dog report and she followed up with a call to us. In early May, we saw a beagle that looked a little bit like Sass on the Petharbor posting, but we didn't think it was her. Still, it was eating at us, so I asked Faye to look at the pictures on our blog and go back into the shelter... She did and confirmed it wasn't Sass. That saved us a 2 hour drive (there and back) and put our minds at ease (although we'd rather find Sass, or course!).

Many people tell us to go to the shelters regularly, but that's very difficult to manage and heartbreaking. It's great that many area shelters use the petharbor system to post pictures. It's even better when they have a person who takes the responsibility to interact and help those of us who just want to get our pets back. Thank you, Faye.