Missing 16 Year-Old Deaf, Blind Poodle Reunited With Owner

Clayton Animal Control Officer Angela Lee (back left) talks with Toby Brooks and his family from Concord, NC after reuniting them with their missing poodle, Cocoa, Tuesday afternoon at the Clayton Police Department. Photo courtesy JoCoFire.com

It has been quite an adventure for Cocoa, a 16 year-old deaf and blind poodle who disappeared from his home nearly a month ago.

On Tuesday, Cocoa was reunited with her owner, Toby Brooks from Concord, NC thanks to the help of Town of Clayton Animal Control Officer Angela “Angie” Lee.

Cocoa’s adventure began when she slipped out of Brooks home into the night.  Brooks immediately began searching the neighborhood, posting Cocoa’s photo on Facebook, and searching with the Humane Society without any luck.

As luck would have it, an animal-loving couple from Massachusetts had stopped in Concord, NC to refuel as they headed back home from a trip. They spotted Cocoa sadly wandering around the parking lot with no ID tag or other identification. It broke the couples heart. They didn’t have time to search for the owner, so they placed Cocoa in their vehicle and soon ended up in Belchertown, MA.

With the help of their local animal control officer, the Massachusetts family posted pictures and the story of her rescue on various websites.  The nationwide network of Animal Control Officers kept the chain moving through various non-profit organizations from Massachusetts to North Carolina until Angie Lee happened upon dear “Cocoa” late one evening on NC Lost & Found Pets. 

Lee went to work contacting every agency, animal rescue group and fellow animal control officers in the Concord, NC area.  Within 24 hours she had a response from Toby Brooks who was so elated – he knew instantly when seeing her picture that it was his baby so the wheels started turning.An ingenious, non-profit animal rescue group “Pilots N Paws”stepped in.  This group of dedicated animal lovers are pilots who volunteer their time and the use of their planes to save the lives of innocent animals.  This generous group along with Angie made this reunion a reality.  The arrangements were secured and the flight plan was filed.

Cocoa department Massachusetts for Pennsylvania with her pilot friend on Saturday. On Sunday, they made the trip from Allentown, PA to the Johnston County Airport in Smithfield where they were met by Lee.

Cocoa was able to spend two nights with Lee’s family of unique, sweet, and some might call handicapped animals. Cocoa seemed to fit right in with a cat with one eye or a dog with three legs. But Cocoa couldn’t say.

Cocoa was treated to a complimentary bath and grooming before her big reunion Tuesday at the Clayton Police Department with the Brooks family who had driven down from Concord.  What a happy day for both the Brooks family and Cocoa.