TarQwyn said she regularly finds dogs that have been missing for a month or longer. She said Maddox's case is challenging because his profile is that of a dog that wants to roam.
“He is aloof and skittish and when a dog goes missing from an area that they are not familiar with, that's not their home territory, they tend to roam,” TarQwyn said. “And that's what Maddox has done. He's covered a fairly large area.”
Maddox's 12-pound size and short coat might seem to make him vulnerable, but having tracked miniature pinschers in the past TarQwyn said they are resilient.
“Contrary to what a lot of people think, these dogs don't generally succumb to elements,” she said. “Sometimes there are accidents, but most of the time these dogs are survivors. They want to live.”
For Maddox to be found, TarQwyn said his face will have to stay in the public eye and he also will have to stay in an area for at least two or three days. Maddox has been traveling along creek beds and in fields. He has been tracked to a road just once during the search.
“The biggest issue is keeping the dog on people's minds,” she said. “We also need him to slow down.”
But even though the two-month anniversary of his disappearance is approaching, Vestal remains hopeful. She has created a Facebook page that has more than 1,000 likes. Several people have come forward to volunteer to check local shelters for Maddox on a rotating basis.
“The support has been amazing and it really helps me get through this,” Vestal said. “It gives me a lot of hope. I know he's out there, and I can't wait to see him again.”
Vestal can be reached at 615-3279 or (323) 217-9337. An unspecified reward is being offered.
I always wake up thinking today will be the day that we'll get that call and I get hopeful, but the nights are so hard. Then the process repeats itself all over again the next day.”
Her 7-year-old miniature pinscher went missing Christmas Eve.