“A guide dog was stolen from a visually impaired woman in a public place!” the initial post about the lost dog read, accompanied by a photo of the golden Labrador.
It triggered hundreds of impassioned requests to the thieves to return the dog immediately.
“What’s wrong with you, people? Get over yourselves! If we can do such things for money, there is no hope,” read a post that summarized the Russian online community’s reaction.
Yulia Dyakova relies completely on her dog to get around the city, so the news triggered a massive outcry among compassionate Muscovites, with volunteer teams searching for the animal and investigators mounting a probe.
The head of the Russian Investigative Committee, Yury Bastrykin, personally ordered his forces to join the search, after he read about the blind girl’s plight in the media.
“Please tell Yulia we’ve found her dog, and they can reunited any time,” Investigative Committee press rep Vladimir Markin wrote.
Eventually, the guide dog was found at a shelter in another part of the city.
“It’s Diana. Pink nose, ears… Of course it’s Diana. Yes, it’s my dog. Thanks,” Yulia, the owner, told journalists, as she burst into tears.
RT witnessed the happy reunion.
“What can a person feel if their friend, their child is taken away? I don’t have children myself, Diana is like a child to me. I’ve been worried about her all the time. I knew what was going on with me, but I didn’t know about her, I didn’t know if she was fed and taken care of, if she was even alive,” Yulia told RT, also speaking about several heart-breaking botched attempts to return the dog.
“People have been finding dogs and calling me, saying they found a similar doggie. I came at each call, and it was not Diana, it was clear for me in one moment.”
“I know the nose of my dog. My Diana is used to me touching her nose, and she never turned away. Same thing with the ears. One time they showed me a doggie, but I said that my Diana has softer ears,” Yulia said.
She spoke about their everyday routines, and how wonderful the dog is at helping her out.
“We leave the house, and I say: Diana, shop. Diana, institute. And she always knows where to direct me. No other instructions are needed,” Yulia said.