Batty the wayward Beagle was on the lamb for 29 days. Rescued from a hoarding situation and adopted by a caring owner, Batty slipped free of his collar and led Brian, Jerry and Aaron on an intense journey to bring him home.

    Batty the wayward Beagle was on the lamb for 29 days. Rescued from a hoarding situation and adopted by a caring owner, Batty slipped free of his collar and led Brian, Jerry and Aaron on an intense journey to bring him home.

    You see, Batty was not the typical lost dog case. He kept traveling, sometimes 10 miles a day. So ‘The Retrievers’ had to stray from normal tactics and drive out with a fully set up trap in the back of their van, hoping, when they caught up with Batty, that they could quickly deploy the trap in his path of travel.

    Signs and flyers were put up, asking for the community's help in finding Batty. And that's where the first of many sighting calls came in. A farmer about 14 miles south of Crookston spotted Batty. He knew he read a flyer about this beagle, so he turned around and drove all 14 miles back to town just to get Aaron's phone number. After that day the phone calls came pouring in. Over 50 total sightings. They asked for Crookston's help, and they sure got it. Even The Polk County Sheriff's Office, responding to a call about a dog on the side of Highway 75, gave them a call. Two sheriffs deputies even waited by the side of the road until The Retrievers arrived, just to give them a chance to catch Batty, but to no avail.         
    Because of all the sighting calls, they where able to catch up to Batty a total of five times. And yes, the fifth time was the charm. On May 18, 2015, a caller reported seeing a beagle wandering in a field at the intersection of Highway 102 and Polk County Road 45. He said he would wait for them to arrive and keep an eye on the dog.

    Jerry and Brian rushed into action. They loaded the trap and sped out to meet up with the caller. Sure enough, Batty decided to lay down in the tall grass for a nap, just out of eyesight. Quickly they set and baited the trap. They backed off and waited a couple hours, but still no movement. Discouraged, they decided to try and confirm whether or not Batty was still in the field. They set up the quadcopter drone and flew it out into the field. Quickly realizing they where just out of range they landed the drone and decided to drive up and disarm the trap.

    As they approached the trap, they noticed something struggling in it. This can't be Batty?! They only looked away for five minutes, and yet there he was, pacing in circles, searching for the trap's exit that was open only moments ago.

    This case showed us what can happen when a community comes together and helps their neighbors. It also showed us how important it is to have a dedicated owner. Aaron spent a lot of time taking and recording sighting after sighting and quickly relaying that information.

    The Retrievers is a non-profit, all volunteer Lost Dog Team. We have recently expanded our team with the addition of new case managers in northern Minnesota. To find out more, or to donate, visit theretrievers.org/donate