How do you get back a beloved dog that’s missing in another state?

“I never gave up. I never lost hope. I think what I got out of this was the kindness of strangers.” — Carole King, owner of missing dog

If you’re Carole King, you quit your job as a postal carrier. You reach out on social media, you post hundreds of flyers, and answer all phone calls.

You drive and walk hundreds of miles. And you are supported by complete strangers in the Montana town where Katie, your beloved border collie, disappeared.

A Reunion Born of Love and Determination

It’s a remarkable story of love, determination, teamwork, and a bit of good luck played out over 57 agonizing days.

When King finally spotted Katie by a tree in Kalispell, Montana, on the morning of Sept. 15, she bear-hugged the dog.

“People are stopping in their vehicles, getting out and hugging us. I think the whole neighborhood knew that we found her,” she told the Daily Inter Lake newspaper of Kalispell.

“I never gave up. I never lost hope. I think what I got out of this was the kindness of strangers.”

Possibly Spooked by Thunderstorm

King and her husband, Verne, live near Spokane, Washington, and had just arrived in Kalispell for a four-day getaway. They believe that a thunderstorm caused Katie to run out of their hotel room. When a search of the grounds didn’t turn her up, the hunt was on in the wilderness near Glacier National Park.

That search came to include the use of night-vision goggles and setting up wild-game cameras in spots that Katie reportedly was seen.

As you might imagine, Katie’s time away from home took a toll. She lost 12 pounds and was dehydrated. She’s expected to make a full recovery.

“The doctor walked up to her and she said is this the famous Katie? And her eyes welled up with tears,” King said. “That touched me.”

Watch: Woman Reunited With Border Collie Missing for 57 Days

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