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'Hoping For A Christmas Miracle': Family Devastated After Dog Flees Vet In Monroeville

DEC. 22 UPDATE: Scooby has been found safe.

MONROEVILLE (KDKA) -- A local family is left reeling after the veterinary clinic they trusted with their beloved dog lost her.

"I took my dog in for a routine appointment at Banfield, and about 50 minutes later they notified me they lost my dog," said Nicholas Chontas.

The intensive search to find the pup now includes a reward for her safe return.

Chontas is scouring Monroeville where his beloved pup was last seen Friday when she was lost by staff at Banfield Veterinary Hospital.

"This is little Coco bean. She's been out with us all day. Hunting the trails and hoping we can find her sister in the woods."

Nicholas Chontas of Braddock Hills brings little Coco on the search to try and find her sister Scooby. The Shepard/pit mix, who is about 60 pounds, was last seen by her family three days ago.

"When you think of dogs, Scooby probably is pretty much the dog you would think about," he said.

Chontas dropped Scooby off at Banfield Veterinarian Hospital on William Penn Highway for a routine test Friday. He says shortly after, hospital staff lost her.

"I'm hurt, you know. I've been a customer there for nine years. Scooby's been going there all her life and I never even thought something like this could even happen there," Nicholas Chontas said.

According to Chontas and ​Banfield, Scooby somehow got away from two staff members while outside, despite being double leashed. The family of the beloved pup says they weren't notified however until 50 minutes later.

"They're really owning up to their mistake, and I appreciate that," he said.

Banfield regrettably admits Scooby got away from staff but say they're doing everything to find her and say, in part, "we have strict policies in place regarding the handling of pets in and around our hospital, and we continue to evaluate and find ways to improve our policies to help keep our patients safe."

Banfield hired a certified search and rescue professional, and​ they're offering a $5,000 reward to find Scooby.

Chontas says it's as though the entire Monroeville community is looking for her, sightings from people he doesn't know are pouring into his Facebook page which is keeping spirits bright. He feels like Scooby is out there. He and his wife and new baby boy just want Scooby home with the rest of the family.

"Hoping to bring her home for Christmas, hoping for a Christmas miracle."

If you see Scooby do not approach or chase, simply call police.

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