Dog makes surprising journey across Salt Lake Valley

8 photos
Save Story
Leer en español

Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

SANDY -- Dogs have a keen sense of direction and smell, which may help explain one dog's amazing journey.

Joey, a black Labradoodle (a Labrador Retriever-Poodle mix) disappeared from his home in Sugar House earlier this month. Three weeks later, he turned up in Sandy at the home of his owner's mother.

From from Sugar House to Dimple Dell Drive in Sandy where the other family member lives is about 15 miles as the crow flies -- but dogs don't fly, so how he made it is a mystery.

It's too bad Joey can't tell his side of the story because if he could, it just might be a best-seller.

"Nobody can believe it," said Joey's owner Brandie Schulz. "It's a movie. It's ‘Homeward Bound.'"

Joey is full of fun and energy now, but boy has it been a long month.

Back on July 2, his family went camping and left him at their Sugar House home. But fireworks might have scared him enough to somehow get loose and run away.

"I think he knew we weren't there, so he figured he's going to probably go to where we might be," Brandie said.

When Brandie and her family came back home, Joey was gone. They put up flyers, visited animal shelters and drove around looking for him... but nothing.

"I thought for sure we'd get a phone call from the pound saying he was dead," Brandie said.

Three weeks later, the family had almost given up hope when Brandie's mother Linda Erickson heard barking near her Sandy home.

"I look over and its Joey, and I just... Is that a miracle or what?" Linda said.

She brought Joey inside and called her daughter.

"She started crying. She just broke down crying," Linda said.

Of course the biggest question is, how did Joey get to Sandy from Sugar House? Did he takes roads or trails? Did he go into the mountains? Where did he sleep and eat? Those are all questions the family would love to have answers to.

"Oh, I would love if he could talk," Linda said. "Wouldn't it be wonderful if a dog could talk and tell you his adventure in three weeks?"

The only thing the family knows for sure is that Sugar House and Sandy are about 15 miles apart.

Joey has been to this house in Sandy before, but exactly how he knew to get there again the family will never know.

"I have no idea. It's just amazing," Brandie said.

Joey lost a lot of weight and had sores on his feet but is doing much better now.

"Now he's called Joey the Wonder Dog," Linda said.


View Larger Map


Most recent Utah stories

Related topics

Alex Cabrero


    Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the Trending 5.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast