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Good advice for anyone trying to find a lost dog

Second dog retrieved in Westford
By DAVID PERRY

Mazy, the stolen golden retriever who ended up 76 miles from home in Westford, was found safe and healthy yesterday just before 6 a.m.

Mazy turned up after owner Molly Rice left articles of her clothing overnight near a field and the woods behind the Blanchard Middle School in Westford, where Mazy was last seen Sunday about noon. The clothing, meant to lure the dog with its owner's scent, apparently did the trick.

Early yesterday, Rice walked out to where she left the clothing and spotted Mazy huddled near a tree. A happy reunion ensued with Rice's "kids."

The discovery of the dog, stolen from the Tilton, N.H., home of owner Rice with her other golden retriever Saturday evening, ended a frantic, impassioned search by Rice and a group of friends and relatives.

The other dog, an outgoing 5-year-old male named Taylor, was found Sunday afternoon in Westford.

"We're just ecstatic, beside ourselves," Patty Rice, Molly's sister-in-law, said yesterday by phone from Tilton.

"It's a huge relief. But they're just exhausted," she added, as the dogs snoozed at her feet.

The skittish Mazy, 4, had eluded Mike Harrington, Westford's animal-control officer, on Sunday. Harrington was able to capture Taylor in front of Westford's Blanchard Middle School then, but Mazy bolted into the woods.

On Monday, when Molly Rice heard a tip that her dogs might be in the Westford area, she raced down and was reunited with Taylor, and she and a small contingent of family and friends camped out at the Blanchard beginning Monday when they couldn't find Mazy.

Taylor was in tow, and Rice said they wouldn't leave until Mazy was found.

On Tuesday afternoon, the group spotted paw prints near the school and later found a small clump of Mazy's tail fur in some barbed-wire fencing.

Mazy appears in good shape, Patty Rice said.

"She's dirty and tired, but she managed to stay hydrated," she said.

Rice called the support of the people in Westford "amazing."

"From the staff at the school to the neighbors, we just don't know how to begin to thank everyone," she said.

Tilton police are investigating the theft, which occurred while Rice attended a Styx concert in Gilford.

David Perry's e-mail address is dperry@lowellsun.com.

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