Following a lead

Thanks for continuing to check in here. I said that if we ever needed help, I’d post, and here we are!

For the past couple of months, a very small team has continued to work on Marisol search — they approached us with a plan, and we wanted to make sure we tried everything to get her back, so we said yes. I haven’t been posting regular updates here because it’s been the same cycle — a sighting, a cluster of sightings, something hopeful, and then nothing for weeks — and it’s really tough to constantly recount the same series of ups and downs — those moments of feeling close and then watching that slip away. We’re grateful for all of their efforts to follow up as thoroughly as possible with every lead and for how proactive they’ve been with the search.

The team has consulted with GSDR, and we brought a tracker in a couple of times. There was a solid set of sightings at the end of August/early September that we were able to confirm with a scent dog, but the description would’ve been enough — this was our best sighting since December 2010. We picked up Mari’s scent again after a November sighting and then it got quiet again. No sightings. No scents. We got one lead about a dog who was brought to a police station that sounded like a possibility, but it wasn’t her.

And then there’s this, which one of the team members posted to GSDR’s FB page:

Marisol is a former PR Sato and she has been missing since Nov. 2010, when she went missing after a dog attack in the Middlesex Fells Reservation. We have solid information by way of a sighting that Marisol was still alive in September ’11 in Winchester MA. Based on more recent information, Marisol may have been picked up over the past 2-3 weeks by some Good Samaritans who took her to a local vet or vet hospital for care. Please contact (781) 334- 8364 with any information that will help us bring Marisol home. All information will remain confidential.

Until this point, we’ve been able to track down all of the leads and confirm or eliminate them (one of the team members is a retired state police officer, another’s a journalist — you don’t get more thorough follow up!). Several were coyotes/foxes. We also found more Mari lookalikes. But some of the sightings panned out, so we’re pursuing everything.

Now we can use help with outreach to try to verify or eliminate this lead.

Mari is not chipped. As of September, she still had her collar. I’m sure her tags have worn off if they haven’t fallen off, and I don’t know if she still has her collar.

I have a list of vets and shelters in the area. We’d like to get refresher posters to them and also call to see if any dogs were brought in within the time frame listed above who match Mari’s description.

Is there anyone who has time over the next few days to drop off a poster or make a couple of calls? If so, just leave a comment, let me know the town, and we can divide and (hopefully) conquer.

Also, please help spread the word through Facebook, Twitter, wherever. *Any* additional information would help at this point, whether through a vet’s office or a friend of a friend who knows someone who picked up a dog and thought she was a stray, not a lost dog whose owners have been trying to bring her home for over a year.

Mari survived blizzards, an earthquake, and a hurricane. Here’s hoping she’s still surviving and was brought in for some care.

Thanks for all of your continued thoughts for our pup. Hopefully she can sense the army at her back and will stay tough, smart, and strong.


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30 Responses to Following a lead

  1. Jane says:

    I can help make calls and also scan shelters. Just let me know how I could help. I could also drop off posters if you tell me which town(s) to cover.
    Wow, what a trooper she is! I feel for both of you with these ups and downs.
    I still think of her everyday and visualize her safe return.

  2. barry says:

    If you do get her back, will you still let her run around of leash? Using a simple leash would have kept her out of this whole mess.

    • linda says:

      REALLY BARRY!! Marisol was being attacked by another dog…and A SIMPLE LEASH would not have made a difference in that case!! The dog walker did the best she could at that time.

    • Lori Pathak says:

      Barry, you apparently came in at the end of the conversation and are trying to give advice. You clearly have no idea what happened that fateful day. Just a note to you and others that would like to give their two cents, please wait until Mari IS FOUND AND SAFE AT HOME and then make sure you have your facts straight. Until then, please leave this site for those who are desperately trying to rescue her. I am sure that everyone has her best interest at heart but there is a time and place for everything.

      • cindy says:

        Personally I think this is all a joke…I called the phone number many months ago and then sent a pic of a dog that was identical, walking with a man….the only reply I got was “got it” (refering to the pic sent to her phone)….I replied with that’s it “got it” not even a thanks or maybe it’s Marisol/ no it’s not Marisol or where was this location? …nothing….give me break….never got a reply back…well I still see the dog and if it’s Marisol…. seems to be in better hands !!!!!!

        • Mary says:

          Cindy: please believe me this is not a joke. As a member of Mariso’s army I have been looking for her and putting up posters since Dec. 2010. On Monday, I saw a gentleman on the Cambridge Common walking a dog that was identical to Marisol. I too took photos of the animal and then approached the man. He was aware of Marisol & said whenever he takes his dog in the Fells, people stop him to inquire if it is Marisol. His dog is a male. though. Thank you for your efforts in trying to help us find Marisol.

        • bella says:

          Cindy…a few of us took over the Marisol search last year to give her owners much needed down time from the emotional search. We look for Marisol EVERYDAY…We have a camera and feed station set right now in Winchester after we received a possible sighting. Please contact me directly to talk about the dog you have seen. You can reach me at 781-334-8364 – you’ll see this # on Marisol’s fliers. I look forward to hearing from you.

  3. Ann Marie says:

    This morning I called the following Vet offices to ask if they have Marisol or at least heard her story:
    Stoneham Animal Hospital, Central Animal Hospital in Stoneham, Winchester, Woburn, Wakefield & Melrose.
    All of these hospitals checked or will check their records and either contact me or look at the Help Find Marisol Website and contact you.
    I hope this helps and I think of her every time I pass the Fellsway and pray that she will be home with you very, very soon.
    I will try to contact additional vet’s later today.
    Good luck,
    Ann Marie

  4. Gail says:

    This is encouraging news! I can make calls today and/or bring posters over the weekend to VESCONE in Waltham, Harbor Vets (a mobile vet service), VCA Whole Pet in Everett, and any other vet or animal hospital in the towns surrounding Medford. Just let me know what you need!

  5. anindita says:

    Thanks so much for the offers of help! I’ll follow up by email to coordinate.

  6. Leslie says:

    Wow, what an exciting post. Sightings, trackers, a potential good samaritan. . . the heart sings, a little nervously. “Here’s hoping she’s still surviving and was brought in for some care” — INDEED.

    I live in Watertown and can help with calls or poster dropoffs.

  7. Simone says:

    Would love to help–I think of Marisol so often and am always hoping she will find her way back to you. I live in Reading and you can contact me at the email address provided.

  8. barry says:

    Linda, I’ve had dogs for 40 years and I never let them off leash while outside. We have been in several dangerous situations–absolutely every one caused by an OFF LEASH dog. Because I have always had my dog/dogs on leash, I was able to control them and get them to safety, fortunately. All these yuppie dog owners who think its “cool” to let a dog run off leash in public places, should start thinking about the dog’s safety for a change.

    • anindita says:

      Re: what actually happened that day: Mari and 3 other small dogs were with their dog walker. Two were on leash. Two were not. They were all together near the bridge by the entrance of the Lawrence Woods. An off-leash dog that was used for breeding and fighting ran at their group from the entrance and attacked. The dog went for Mari, who yelped, and when one of the on-leash dogs intervened, she bolted.

      The on-leash dog who jumped in nearly died from the severe bite to his belly. The dog that attacked didn’t have a collar, so when her owner caught up, he had no way of pulling her off and punched her in the head several times to stop the attack. The dog walker couldn’t pull the on-leash dog free because the other dog had clamped down and wouldn’t let go. The owner of the attack dog finally got his dog to let go, gave false contact information and left, saying he was going to put the dog down.

      If you’re going to blame someone for what happened, blame the attacker. The dog walker worked with the police to try to track this man down. There were reports of a matching dog who attacked dogs in Stoneham and Winchester. They never got him.

      I’m grateful that Mari and Toby weren’t killed, that their dog walker wasn’t injured, and that there’s even a chance of finding Mari. I don’t want this to devolve into an argument about leash use as our only goal is to recover Mari if she’s still out there, so I’m going to ask everyone to maintain that focus in this space.

    • chris says:

      Good idea Barry, I hear now of parents who don’t let their children run and play with other kids because of fear of getting hurt or bullied. They too are only thinking of their kids “safety.” They only can walk near their parents, except when they are in the house of course. They too laugh at all the yuppies with their play dates. The kids are really happy and well adjusted having this type of life.

  9. Katie says:

    Anindita, I’d be glad to reach out in North Reading (where I’m from) and the Wakefield Animal Hospital. I’ll also post on Facebook to see if friends and family on the north shore can help out. I might be able to get more folks’ attention by listing a bunch of specific towns that are in her range. Do you have a list of towns?

    Katie B

  10. Katie says:

    P.S. Also happy to drop info at the Animal Rescue League and Angel Memorial in Boston–or is that too far out of range?

  11. Donna Yerick says:

    Really Barry, Anindita and Andrew feel bad enough without your opinion. I think that Mari will be leashed upon her return they are not stupid. If you have nothing helpful to contribute but out. I live in NY State Anindita but if you want me to make some phone calls I will gladly do it. Just let me know.

  12. Mary says:

    What wonderful uplifting news from Anindita about the recent Marisol sightings. I have never given up hope for her safe return. I’ve printed out copies of the newest poster and will be out there this weekend putting them up. I am in the Winchester/Arlington area so please e-mail me Anindita if you have specific spots you would like covered. The new posters are already up in our car windows and Marisol’s Army is still out there.

  13. linda says:

    Anindita, the person who posted that on facebook was Cathie Soter, it was on Jan.9th @ 12;20am and there were questions below her post and one was if Marisol was microchipped…and she responded YES?? and after reading your post above i see that Marisol is not…..this post was left up on GSDR facebbok page but all comments and questions below it were removed

    • Cathie says:

      Linda, after reviewing all my responses to all FB reply there were only 2 inquiries on a mircochip, one from Linda Surette and my reply on 1/10 was “Linda, No microchip. Marisol is not my dog but I have been assisting with this case since Nov ’10. Since the GS report we are now focusing on public awareness in hopes that someone comes forward with additional information on Marisol’s location. Thank you. The second was from Mark Surette and my reply on 1/12 was “Marisol is not chipped”. Both we private messages so I am unsure where you got a “YES” answer out of either of these replies. As the saying goes “If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem”

    • anindita says:

      Hi Linda — I’m not sure about the GSDR page (when I saw it, there were a bunch of “Likes” and no comments) but Mari definitely isn’t chipped, and we let vets know this in the call down.

      I think there was some confusion as to your identity — there’s a Linda who was banned from the Daisy page because of disruptive comments. I let Cathie know that you’ve been following and supporting the search since November 2010 with your 5 pups (including the tiny one!) — sorry for the case of mistaken identity!

      Cathie’s the tracker whose dog picked up Mari’s scent in September and November and confirmed those sightings. She’s been working with us in-person since January (when Jake eliminated a couple of sightings because there was no scent!) so we’re all on the side of bringing Mari home.

  14. Renee J says:

    I still keep the contact number in my cell phone in hopes of a miracle that i’ll see her frolicing around in my travels.
    I live in Lynn, but am willing to make phone calls and hang up posters if needed. Just let me know. I love Mari so much <3

  15. Rosemary says:

    I live in Cambridge and am happy to travel to post flyers. I can also make calls for you.
    Wishing you the best,

  16. Sharon says:

    I’m just catching up on all of this information at this moment, and I’m so excited! I’m so sorry I am unable to help at this time… I’m in the hospital having just given birth to my son! But my thoughts, best wishes, good karma are all with you – I have never forgotten about Marisol and have never stopped believing she will be home with you some day!

  17. Meira Smith says:

    So exciting!

    Let me know what I can do to help!

  18. jan says:

    always thinking of you all hoping Marisol gets home…

  19. Meredith R. says:

    There is a vet office only a few blocks away from where Toby (the retreiver who tried to save her??) lives by the Winchester Fells entrance. Its 95 Cross Street Winchester, MA . I do not live in the area anymore, but has anyone contacted them? I know at one point they were aware of Mari’s story, but unsure if anyone checked with them recently?? I THINK the number is (781) 721-0707, but I am not 100% sure. Good luck and glad no one has given up!

  20. Bruce says:

    Barry, what type of dogs do you have. Miniature poodles. Many dog breeds were meant to be off leash. They can enjoy their life. I guess you only care about you, and not about a dogs happiness. I guess you never let your wife or kids drive a car because that is dangerous too. So I bet your one of those yuppies who drives his kid to school for fear they may get abducted. I write this because unlike you I have spent countless ours in the woods looking for Marisol while walking my dogs off leash. But then again I know how to train a dog to respond to voice commands. Clearly you dont.

  21. June says:

    I am happy to take posters to Winchester Vet and to Winchester Vet Clinic if that hasn’t happened yet, I live nearby.

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