Southwest Ranches Residents Celebrate Special Family Reunion

The Peterson family was devastated when their new puppy, Cedar, disappeared from their yard two years ago. They believed the four-month-old German Shepherd was stolen, because the family’s other dogs were still there, but the gate had been left open.

Distraught over the disappearance, the Petersons posted flyers around the community and in area Publix stores, notified local veterinarian offices, and offered a reward for Cedar’s return. They even hired a pet detective and paid for a pet alert to go out across the southeastern part of the United States.

The Petersons also alerted the microchip company. “We never gave up hope,” states Tamara Peterson. “My son knew she had been microchipped and prayed and had faith that she would come in one day.”

In April, the family got the call they had long awaited – Cedar had been found. A County Marshal in Hugo, Colorado, almost 2,000 miles away, had found her in a snow-covered ditch.

“When I got the initial call saying they thought they had located Cedar in northeastern Colorado, I was shocked,” shares Peterson. “It brought tears to my eyes. It was unbelievable.”

The officer took Cedar to a local veterinary hospital where she was scanned for a microchip, which was traced back to Balasky Animal Hospital in Davie. Cedar was injured and malnourished but was nursed back to health before being reunited with the Petersons.

Wings of Rescue, Cloud Nine Rescue Flights and the Humane Society of Broward County arranged to have Cedar flown home, where she was reunited with her family on the tarmac at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport.

The family then brought her home to reunite with their other dogs. According to Peterson, “She 100% remembered our rescue dog, Amy. Cedar cried and wagged her tail like she saw her mother. She was just accepted right back into my pack like she never left.”

Appreciative and forever grateful for the efforts of the Humane Society and Wings of Rescue to reunite the family, Peterson is now urging all dog-owners to have their pet microchipped.

“The microchip absolutely is 100% responsible for this reunion,” states Peterson. “If people would microchip, and make sure that it’s registered to the current address, many lost animals would make it home safe.”

Cherie Wachter, vice president of marketing for the Humane Society of Broward County, whole-heartedly agrees. “We can’t stress enough the importance of having pets microchipped. The Humane Society offers this service for $20, plus tax, Monday through Friday, from 9am to 4:30pm, no appointment necessary.”

  • The Humane Society of Broward County is located at 2070 Griffin Road. For more information call 954-266-6831 or visit