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Animal Services Lost and Found Pet Page

Dog and Owners Separated in Crash Reunited

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May 23, 2008

A dog that was ejected from a car as it crashed and rolled off Interstate 15 on Thursday was reunited with its owners today at the County’s animal shelter in Carlsbad.

The dog, an 11-year-old Jack Russell named Emmy, made her way to a back yard in Carmel Mountain Ranch – about three miles from the crash site.  County Animal Services picked up the dog this morning.  Emmy had no tags or microchip.  Animal Services had a tough time catching her because she was scared.

“It was really frightened, poor little thing,” said Laurie Joniaux, deputy director of the County’s Animal Services Department.  Afterwards, the woman recognized the dog’s picture on the Internet classified site Craigslist – where Emmy’s owners posted her photo.

On Thursday, Emmy’s owners, MaryBeth Zmuda and her husband Timon Martin of Clairemont, were heading south on Interstate 15 when Zmuda lost control of their Toyota Matrix. The car careened off the freeway and into the embankment, rolling over.

The couple was safe. But Emmy was missing.

“I was frantic,” Zmuda said. “I knew she wasn’t in the car. My husband went looking for her. Bystanders along the side of the road were looking for her. “

The couple was taken to the hospital and released after being treated for minor injuries.  Later, Zmuda and Martin contacted KUSI with their story, and posted Emmy’s picture on Craiglist.  The woman who found Emmy happened to check Craigslist for postings of lost dogs and recognized Emmy’s photo.  The woman called Zmuda and the couple went to the Carlsbad shelter to find Emmy.

“It was heaven,” Zmuda said of their reunion. “It sounds cheesy, but it really was.  It was very distressing to think I might never see her again. “