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Big volunteer search effort reunites woman with dog that disappeared down a ditch

<i>KTBS</i><br/>Sandra Scott (left) pets Gracie
Sandra Scott (left) pets Gracie

By Gerry May

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    SHREVEPORT, Louisiana (KTBS) — Many across the city saw a Facebook post about a dog that disappeared down a drainage ditch. And it worked. Gracie, the beloved lab mix, was found by a homeowner in South Highlands who knew to be on the lookout for her.

He spotted Gracie nestled by his trash bin, and got on the phone with a friend who lives nearby, Eli Brasell, who was active in the search.

“He just said, ‘Come get this black dog!'” Brasell said of the call with a laugh.

Brasell zipped over to the house along Line Avenue at Ontario, while also notifying Gracie’s owner, Sandra Scott, to come reunite with the pooch she had not seen for five anguishing days.

“Praise God and all these volunteers that found her. I have Gracie back, and our house is back the way it should be now,” Scott said.

Scott got together with several of the many volunteers who helped search the streets, drainages, and spread word on social media. They include her longtime friend, Cynthia Keith, who is highly connected throughout the dog rescue community as president of the Shreveport Dog Park Alliance.

“It was shared and shared and shared and shared and shared,” Keith said of Scott’s Facebook post, along with Neighborhood Watch.

“This one was special,” Keith added about Gracie. “She’s an elderly dog. She was in a ditch. She was underground. It was dark. Those ditches go everywhere.”

Scott says Gracie got away from her while they were on a walk Saturday morning. She fell down into a concrete drainage in the area of Line Avenue and Robinhood.

“She was anxious. I was anxious. She couldn’t get up. I couldn’t get down,” Scott said of the steep embankments. “She went under the culvert and we couldn’t see her anywhere.

“The fire department came. They couldn’t do anything,” Scott added.

But a lot of other people — many of them strangers who learned of Gracie’s plight — could do something. Some of them even slogged through the drainage system looking for Gracie.

Somehow Gracie got out of the ditches. There were sightings of her in the South Highlands that Scott and the volunteers would check out, before Gracie was finally collared Wednesday morning.

“It’s just heart warming for all of these people to come to the aid of Gracie,” Scott said. “It took a village to find her.”

It’s the second time Gracie has been rescued. Scott says she picked her up at a free rescue adoption at PetSmart about a decade ago after someone found her along Flournoy Lucas Road.

“She’s street smart. She’s a survivor,” Scott said as she gave Gracie some firm pats on the side.

Scott is nursing some cuts to one of Gracie’s hind legs. But otherwise, she came through just fine.

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