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.)

Friday, September 30, 2011

We Will Have a Track at 11AM (Saturday morning)

We received a call at 6PM that a woman had seen a dog that could be Sassafras at about 5PM.

The sighting was in Rock Creek Park, just over the bridge from the small parking lot near Jones Mill Road and Levelle Drive in Chevy Chase.

This is a little bit north of where Sass was last tracked, but certainly within the realm of possibility. The woman who saw the dog has looked at the blog and thought the dog was proper weight and similar in appearance to Sass. She described the dog as a healthy beagle who was tracking something and not overly interested in the sighter (or her dog). The sighter saw no other people walking dogs (the area is known for people sometimes allowing their dogs to walk off leash, but the sighter waited awhile and no one came by). She did not notice whether there was a harness or collar. She did think the dog looked like a full beagle, (Sass is not a full beagle which is most noticeable in her ears), so we are hopeful but not certain about this sighting.  We do want to check it out with Sam and Salsa.

Looking for Volunteers for Sunday

We're going to do some flyering this Sunday in the neighborhoods on the east and west sides of Rock Creek Park.  Some of this will be new, and some of this will be checking on flyers that may have come down in all the rain we've been having.  If you can help, please send us a note at!

We're also wondering if anyone is going to the Blessing of the Animals at the National Cathedral on Sunday - it might be a good chance to let people who love animals know about Sassafras, and we'd love to have some business cards passed around there.  (Thanks to volunteer Jen for this suggestion!)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Quiet Now, But Hoping for New Sightings with New Efforts

The phone has been frustratingly quiet, but because of all the rain we've been getting we probably should not be surprised.  It has been nearly six months since Sassafras was lost, and our hearts are still aching from her loss, but we still hope we can bring her back home.  We are incredibly grateful for all the support we've received from people - I can't express that enough.

We will be trying to do some maintenance work this weekend on flyers in neighborhoods she is known to frequent, and putting up more in new areas on the east side of Rock Creek Park.  In addition to these ongoing flyering efforts that reach out to the community for their help, Jeff and I have been sleeping on a cheap set of sheets - if we get a good sighting that we can get to quickly, we can leave strips of cloth with our scent behind to try and encourage our girl to stick around.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Let's Talk Live - Video Now Available

The folks at Let's Talk Live were very nice to us this morning and have posted our portion on their blog. We really appreciate their help (and, if asked, would be oh so happy to come back on the show with Sassafras someday).

Monday, September 26, 2011

Let's Talk Live (Tuesday morning)- More Local Media Coverage of Sassafras' Story:

Tomorrow (Tues, 9/27) we'll be on Let's Talk Live sometime in the first half hour (11:00-11:30AM). We really hope it helps lead us to Sassafras.

According to the show:
Let's Talk Live is the only live and local talk show in Washington, DC, hosted by award winning journalists Natasha Barrett and Melanie Hastings. It keeps the pulse on what's happening, what's in and what makes the Capital City really tick. The show thrives on welcoming live guests who live in and visit DC.  Let's Talk Live broadcasts live at 11am- noon from the NewsChannel 8/TBD Studios in Arlington, VA. NewsChannel 8/TBD is the sister station of WJLA-TV, the ABC affiliate in Washington, DC.

Possible Sighting - 3AM last Thursday

Crossing East West Highway a little east of Grubb... Sighter is our new volunteer Hugh who is trying to go out during the wee hours of the morning. He didn't get a great look at the animal, but this is certainly near recent tracks.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Our Appearance on Anderson Cooper's Daytime Show (10/5 we're told)

We are still waiting for confirmation of an airdate, and we will post as soon as we have some information!

Update:  We are being told the segment will air on 10/5/2011.

Rain, Rain Go Away . . .

It is another rainy day in the DC area.  Generally, this means that people are not out and about making it less likely someone will spot her, but it also means Sassy may not be out.  If Sassy isn't out then when the rain stops she's more likely to be moving around looking for food, so please keep your eyes open when the rain goes away!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Do you have questions?

We're working on updating/revising the FAQ.  If you have questions you'd like answered or clarified let us know.

Possible Sighting - Sunday morning - Connecticut and Leland (Chevy Chase)

Yesterday afternoon we received a call that Sassafras may have been sighted at 3:45 AM that morning crossing Connecticut Ave traveling east to west on Leland Ave (2 blocks south of East West Highway).

Yesterday's Track - Familiar Territory in Rock Creek Park

Yesterday's track took us for the first time into territory we used to walk with Sass before she was lost, namely portions of (the east side of) Rock Creek Park between Sherrill Dr. and Candy Cane City.

Track is in purple. (The night before is in green)

View Tracks - Sept 17, 10 and Aug 31 in a larger map

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Track Will Continue Tomorrow! We Will Need Volunteers to Help Flyer!

Jeff is home from the track and pulling his notes together to put up a map - he'll update this post with that later tonight.

Since this is new territory, we will continue the track tomorrow with Sam and Salsa at 10 a.m.  Our long-time volunteer Debra will be out there tomorrow to help us.  (On a track, it is ideal to have someone walking with Sam, and someone following in a car.)

Again, since this is new territory, it will mean a new flyering effort tomorrow and into the week.  If you can help tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon [meet up time will probably be about 2 p.m.] or if you have time during the week, please send us an email at

UPDATE - Here's the map, with the track in green. Starts at Candy Cane City (mid upper left) and ended on 16th Ave and Sheridan (lower mid/right)

View Tracks - Sept 17, 10 and Aug 31 in a larger map

Confirmed! Track from Candy Cane City Has Begun!

The Wednesday night sighting of Sassafras at Candy Cane City has been confirmed by the tracking dog, Salsa!

This is the first time we've actually had a confirmed track in Rock Creek Park, so it's new territory!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Anderson Cooper Will Help Us Find Sassafras!

Jeff and I were invited to be on Anderson Cooper's new daytime talk show, and our segment was taped this week.  The documentary that Jon did will also be featured (he was there, too!).  We are unsure of the air date, but will post it as soon as we know.

Everyone involved in the show was incredibly supportive and they are excited to help get the word out!  We cannot thank them enough for the opportunity they gave us, or the experience.

We're unable to talk about the details of the show before it airs, but Anderson's dog is named Molly, and she was there, too! (Pictured below with Beth.)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Possible Sighting - Candy Cane City

We received a call this evening that a nine year old playing in the woods near the tennis courts in Candy Cane City* saw a loose dog zoom by around 6PM, running on the path. I talked with his mother and then directly with him. He couldn't tell whether the dog had a collar or harness on... it was all pretty fast but he thought it was Sass.

We've always suspected that Sass would be in Rock Creek Park, but never been able to confirm a sighting there... It's possible... If folks could get the word out to the regulars in that area to be on the lookout, and have their cell phone cameras ready, that would be great. If it was Sass and active in daytime, with enough eyes looking out, we may start getting even closer to bringing her home.

TODAY show web site - "Is their lost dog a lost cause? Internet cries no!"

Hard to fathom that our Sassafras is garnering national attention, as in the new (and very well done) TODAY show web post.

Author Laura T. Coffey asks a great question that hints at how we've been able to go on:
But even though they’re exhausted, how can they stop searching for Sassafras when so many big-hearted strangers haven’t?
We just want Sass back and everyone's support has been so appreciated. Please do read and circulate the article. It does a great job of highlighting the efforts of those involved in the search!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

UPDATE: Anyone able to check 4900 block 1st NW (DC)?

We received a call this evening that a dog has been tied up during the daytime in the 4900 block of 1st st NW since Sunday. If anyone is in that area and would be able to check it out, please send us an email and we can give exact address. Unfortunately we are unable to check it ourselves during the day.

We're asking that if there is a dog there, to please compare with Sass' picture and take a picture yourself (and email to us). If no dog there, to please leave a note or flyer.

This is one of those leads that appears to come from someone well-meaning, but really hard to determine. We've had a number of these and almost always there has not been a dog there. The caller said that s/he did not feel comfortable going back and taking a picture because s/he did not want to disturb the neighbor... which raises a number of flags for us. Still, we'd appreciate help in following it to it's conclusion.

Once determined, we will certainly update the blog. As always, we are very appreciative of help.

UPDATE - Dave reports that he went by twice earlier today (Sept 14)- no dog- will try later

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sammy - Local, but not Sassafras

Pictured below is Sammy, who lives in the neighborhood where we've recently tracked Sassafras. He is always walked on a leash and Sammy's owner has been asked if she's walking Sass. That means the word is definitely getting out:

Note that Sammy has full beagle ears, is much whiter than Sass, and tail is not as fluffy. He's also male. Sass is a 4 year old brown/white/black beagle mix with a distinctive white tipped tail that curls back towards her head and ears more erect and smaller than a typical beagle. 

Of course, some folks are asking if the tracking dog could be mistaking Sammy for Sass. When we have a positive track, the tracking dog is able to distinguish between dogs based on smell, not appearance, so the tracks in the neighborhood should be of Sassafras. (We had another sighting of a beagle in Glenwood cemetery where we used the tracking dog to confirm that it wasn't Sass.)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Today's flyering - Many supportive folk!

Today we sat out at Brookville Market to spread the word and 8 great volunteers hung new posters and placed flyers on car windshield the area... There were many supportive and interesting people checking in at the table at the market, and a couple new enthusiastic T-shirt wearers... See pictures below and thank you to everyone! Please keep spreading the word!

Sass Central - Sept 11

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Volunteers wanted - Sept 11

We'd welcome volunteers to help Sunday (Sept. 11) to hang posters, put flyers on car windshields, and pass out business cards in the area of the last tracks in Chevy Chase (but not Chevy Chase Village).

(If you've been eyeing one of the t-shirts, they will be free -- first come, first served)
Meetup location: Brookville Market, 7027 Brookville Rd in Chevy Chase from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. 

Sept. 10 and Aug. 31 tracks - Looks like a pattern!

Below is an approximate version of latest two tracks on Sept 10 - in red (based on sighting on Sept 7 or 8) and Aug 31 - in blue (based on sighting Aug 29):

View Tracks - Sept 10 and Aug 31 in a larger map

New Track Happening Right Now in Chevy Chase

Salsa is tracking Sass' scent on Connecticut Ave. right now!
UPDATE - Here's an approximate route of track (official one coming tomorrow)

View Sept 10 Track in a larger map

Not Sass in Glenwood Cemetery, Unfortunately

Sam and Salsa came out tonight and checked the Glenwood Cemetery sighting - it was not Sass.  As always, our thanks to them for all their good work.  Thanks also to the couple who called with this sighting, because they came out tonight to show us exactly where the dog walked so Salsa's could sniff the right spot, and we would know if it was our girl.

Jeff just called to say that they are on their way over to check out the other sighting that was called in recently, on Brookville in Chevy Chase.  We're pretty sure that Sass has walked Brookville, so if Salsa picks up a trail we hope she pulls on the leash - she will often pull more if the trail is fresh.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Back to Glenwood Cemetery?

Got a call this evening that a couple out walking their two dogs saw a dog at Glenwood cemetery that they believe could be Sassafras (at about 8:45PM). The dog they saw was headed toward the Lincoln Ave entrance (from inside) and when the dog saw them it stopped. It went to the fence and got on its hind legs and looked at them. They approached, and it went on top of the fence (to the east of the main entrance), and then eventually back inside. It appeared to be a beagle with a straigher tail than Sass, and no collar or harness. (We can't remember if her tail was straighter when she was feeling threatened, etc). It matched Sass' size and appeared to be in good shape (and very smart, according to them)

We used to get lots of calls about possible sightings of Sassafras at Glenwood cemetery, but have never had a positive id there (and I don't think ever a track)...  

We're asking Sam (our tracker) whether she thinks it's worth checking out...

Another Sighting in Chevy Chase

A group of kids just called to say they'd seen Sass very close to our last confirmed sighting.  According to them, they saw her yesterday (or maybe the day before) on Brookville in Chevy Chase, between Taylor and Shepherd.

Kids are great spotters, but they also make a lot of crank calls to our phone, so it's hard to know if this is for real, or not.

It would certainly be unusual for Sass to still be in the same neighborhood - she's a traveler and doesn't stick around.

But just in case, leave your gates open and cook things that smell good, Chevy Chase!

Thursday, September 8, 2011


We hope that as the rain wanes, our Sassy girl comes out where someone can see her!

(Here in the DC area we usually get about 4" of rain in September - we've had that much and more just in the past couple of days.)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

An email that makes you feel good

The search is really tough, but every now and then we get an email that simply makes us smile. Here's one, subject "i WANT TO HELP"

hi my name is -----. i'm a 10 year-old girl, AND I LOVE DOGS.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Please Remove all Flyers and Handouts from Chevy Chase Village

A couple of months ago, we posted flyers in Chevy Chase Village (CCV) and the police called and asked us to take them down.  We did.  Since then we've asked all of our volunteers to look at the map, note the boundaries and refrain from posting flyers there.  Our most recent track of Sassafras went through CCV, and we believe it could have been daylight when she walked there, so we tried a different tactic to reach the members of the community - a small hand out that read, "Lost Dog / Please help us bring her home" with a telephone number to call, the blog's address, and photographs of Sassafras.  The police have informed us that they have received complaints about these handouts from members of the community, so we are asking those near or in CCV who spot a handout to please remove it.

The individuals in CCV that we've met over the length of the search have uniformly expressed sympathy and concern for Sass' loss, and we'd really like them all to know how much that is appreciated.  For those who were angered by our handouts, please accept our sincere apologies.

Anyone who lives in the area or who is on a listserv that serves it, please help us get the word out by posting details and talking with your neighbors.

ABC 7 News Story

Thanks to ABC 7 News for picking up our story. (There are a couple misidentifications, but we're ok with that... Jeff is the balding one)

Desperately seeking Sassafras: Owners go all out to find lost dog

Check Out ABC 7 at 5:24 PM tonight

Mark Segraves and camera man, whose name we missed, from ABC 7/WTOP were out interviewing us today and expect a segment at 5:24PM this evening on ABC 7, and then running throughout the evening and early morning on WTOP 8 (cable). They were great and we appreciate their interest. We'll post links when up (...assuming we don't get bumped).

New Calls- Multiple Leads

Given the media attention, the phone is starting to ring with possible sightings, one of which has already been disproven. We'll keep updating this page today, so please come back frequently, and if you have ways to help us determine whether these are likely (in other words, you live in the area or could contact listservs), we'd appreciate the help.

SUNDAY - 11AM - HAMPSHIRE GREEN golf course (Silver Spring)

A group of golfers saw a beagle mix at the 10th hole chasing and howling around 11AM, wearing a reddish harness. They were about 50 yards away, so didn't get a very close look. Likelihood: We think that Sass has probably lost her harness by now, so probably not her...


A nice gentleman called that he's seen a beagle for a few months in the Brookwood estates area of White Plains, MD. About 10 days ago the dog was in his back yard playing with his Yorkies, had a collar on, but would not allow itself to be caught. Last seen 3-4 days ago. Likelihood: We think unlikely. Would mean other local sightings were wrong, but hard to rule out. He was looking directly at website and video and still thought it could be Sass. We hope to stay in touch.

TODAY - 1PM - Kensington near Connecticut Ave -- NOT SASS

Nice folks captured a beagle in their car, called us, and we requested they text us a picture... They did and it wasn't Sass. They promised to contact their local listserv to try to find owner. If it's your dog, contact us and we can pass along information. (We assume this is the same dog that we received a call about a couple days ago Kensington Pkwy and Iverness Dr in North Chevy Chase.)

SATURDAY - 5:30 PM - NE DC - Fort Myer construction depot entrance at the end of Adams St. NE (just off of South Dakota Ave at 32 St.).

Updated: This is not Sassafras, but Anne was kind enough to send a picture, so maybe we can help get this pup home:

From Anne: "Saturday around 5:30 p.m. when we saw a beagle mix that very closely resembles the photos on your web site.  She also seems to be the right age at about 3.5.  At the time, we did not know the whole saga of your search but we are dog people and we tried to get her to come to us with the turkey jerky we had.  She had no collar on and was alone so we thought she was lost and that's why we pulled over.  She was at the entrance to the Fort Myer construction depot entrance at the end of Adams St. NE (just off of South Dakota Ave at 32 St.).  When we approached her she retreated behind the locked gates of the Ft Myer construction.  But she did come out to get the turkey jerky!  We didn't think to snap a photo but I suspect she is staying there because she knew just how to get behind the fence there and seem to know her way around.  Also, she seemed well fed and healthy so maybe someone at Ft. Myer picked her up at a construction site and brought her there where they feed her.  (Just a theory).  I will take a walk up the street with the camera to see if she is still there." Likelihood: Low because Sass has not been confirmed on that side of town, but certainly could get there.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Front Page News! New Washington Post Story and Photo Gallery

The Washington Post was out Friday interviewing us, and then followed along for flyering efforts. Story is now online, with a 5 photo gallery.  Today's paper version of the WP has a teaser on the front page, below the fold.

The closing line really sums things up:
If you have seen this video, then you know how precious the things are that we love, and the lengths to which we would go to have them back again.
[Thank you to Monica Hesse for the compassionate story and Linda Davidson for the photos.]

Another Possible Sighting - North Chevy Chase

A caller thinks he might have seen Sassafras yesterday near Kensington Pkwy and Iverness Dr in North Chevy Chase.  The dog was barking at a mailman about 2-3 p.m. in the afternoon.  We'll be trying to find other people who saw the dog to try and get a better description.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

T-Shirts: Free for Volunteers to Get the Word Out

Willing to take the shirt off your back to help us find Sassafras? Well, no need to do that, but if you'd put a shirt on your back and wear around, we'd greatly appreciate it... especially if you live or work within the Chevy Chase to American University corridor (where we think Sass may now be roaming).

See samples below:

Thanks to super volunteer Mark, who has made about 18 of these, primarily size Large male (but there are a couple M and XL).

If willing to help out, please send us an email with your name and address (and T-shirt size) and we'll get one in the mail, or find a way to deliver!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Another weekend of getting the word out!

We're hoping for a good number of volunteers this weekend to help us put small flyers on cars in the neighborhoods where we think Sass was headed.  While we always wake up and hope that today will be the day we bring her home, we have more hope when we've got a good sighting to work from.

Speaking of the day we bring Sass home, here's a puppy picture, taken before we got to bring her home.  She's the prisoner on the left.

If you think you can help, email us at, and let me know when you're available!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Most recent track

Here's the track from Tuesday night, based on a sighting Sunday afternoon.

It starts at the house (upper right) and went to Chevy Chase elementary school, back toward the house, and then to Connecticut Ave....

After that, headed south on Connecticut (toward bottom left), with a detour into the neighborhood near the golf course, with a drop down to the stream (see water icon), then back to Connecticut and we stopped when it reached Chevy Chase Circle. (Click on track to see it bigger.)

The yellow and light blue colors are from earlier tracks, so you can see this is a visited area more or less.