The Cepoi family lost their dog amid a fatal crash, which killed a child in the other car. The accident left Cristina Cepoi and her two children injured, but those weren’t their only worries. During the car accident, their Shih Tzu puppy named Toby ran off in a panic. They feared he wouldn’t survive on his own.
Yet, thanks to a kind community of dog lovers, Toby was located about six days later. The whole family is still in shock after the horrifying experience, but they’re grateful that they’re all together once again.
A Horrific Accident
Cristina Cepoi was riding in the passenger seat while Lurie Baza drove the car in Maple Valley, Washington near Moses Lake. Cepoi’s children, who are 4 and 6, were in the back seat of the car. The accident suddenly occurred, causing the vehicle to roll over five times.
Nearly everyone involved sustained serious injuries, but the only death was a two-year-old girl in the other car. Earlier that day, another fatal crash occurred in that area, where a 74-year-old man died.
During the chaos, Toby the puppy squeezed out the car’s window and ran off in fear. His family panicked, knowing that his chances of survival were low. The extreme heat is extra dangerous for flat-faced breeds, and there are lots of snakes and coyotes in the area.
Luckily, many fellow dog lovers were willing to help. Lost and Found Pets of Grant County stepped up to help the family search for their lost dog amid all the tragedy.
Toby is Safe!
To help catch Toby, who was probably extra skittish, the family set up a trap. They put Toby’s blanket, some dog treats, some canned dog food, and the daughter’s sock in the trap to lure the pup over.
After about six days of searching, the trap caught Toby! The family couldn’t believe that their dog was coming home after so much time apart.
“We met the family in Ellensburg and when they got out of the car the mom was crying. She was so happy to see their dog,” said Annette Hernandez with Lost and Found Pets of Grant County. “The kids jumped out of their car and were excited to see their pup too. It was so cute, the kids had little zip lock baggies of treats for Toby. When Toby saw them, he was wiggling and wagging his tail like crazy, we could tell he knew who they were and was happy to see them as well,”
Toby is happy to finally be home! It will take a long time for the family to recover from such a scary situation, but they’re lucky to have each other for comfort.