On October 14, Geelong-based mum Sharnee Pocock came home to find their three-month-old American staffy, Jacky Boy, had gone.
She then posted an emotional plea on her Facebook page for help to find their beloved pet.
The dog was a fifth birthday present for her son, Noah, who was devastated when he went missing.
“He’s hurting, he gets into bed every night and says, ‘I wonder where Jacky Boy is, I wonder if he’s cold’,” Sharnee told Geelong Broadcasters.
“He’s a really smart little boy and even though he’s five-years-old, he does notice.”
The house is installed with security cameras, but a review of the CCTV footage gave no clues as to what had happened to Jacky Boy.
Geelong Broadcasters reported Ms Pocock offered a $4000, no-questions-asked reward for the return of the dog, even though she couldn’t really afford it.
She was concerned Jacky Boy might have been stolen by a dog-fighting ring, but it turned out not to be quite so sinister.
“It has seemed he was stolen from our backyard and then just dumped,” Ms Pocock told Yahoo7 News.
“A lovely man found him on Elcho Road, and took him home for the night.
“It turns out that he works at a quarry where my dad delivers fuel to in Moriac, so we went and got him from there.”
Video posted to the mum’s Facebook page shows the heartwarming moment Noah opened the front door on Thursday night to see Jacky Boy come bounding in, tail wagging furiously.
Noah then gleefully chases him around the room, clearly excited to have his “best friend” back.
“We’re just so grateful to have our boy home,” Ms Pocock said.