Judy Wight knew when she saw a picture of Madeline in a rescue kennel four years ago that she had to bring her home. The red-brown coonhound-mix dog became part of the family for Wight and her husband, Thomas Williams.
“Maddie was our first dog, and we love her dearly,” Wight said.
On Dec. 3, Madeline ran away from a dog walker not far from her home in Rockville, Wight said.
In an effort to find her dog, Wight and Williams have printed thousands of flyers and signs, made calls to animal shelters, and organized friends to canvass a neighborhood where Madeline might be, asking people if they had seen the lost dog. They have also set up a robocall in the area, hired a pet detective and offered a reward for Madeline’s safe return.
Wight has two Facebook pages dedicated to tracking possible sightings of Madeline. She said she gets a lot of calls by people who have seen dogs resembling Madeline, but hasn’t been able to confirm whether most of them are her dog or not. Calls have come in from as far away as Olney, Kensington and Silver Spring.
“It’s a bit of a mystery,” Wight said. “There seem to be a lot of medium-sized tan dogs running around.”
Wight said she has brought a tracking dog to some of the places where people reported seeing Madeline. The tracker got a hint of Madeline near the Garrett Park MARC station before Christmas, but Silver Spring, where the more recent calls have come from, yielded no clues.
The most likely sightings have come from the Kensington area, so Wight set up a motion-activated camera and some food to see if she could catch sight of Madeline herself. So far, no luck, but Wight isn’t giving up hope. She said if she can bring Madeline home, all her hard work will be worth it. Until then, she counts on people to keep calling with tips to help focus her search.
“Overall, people have been really kind and helpful,” Wight said.