Strangers Across the Country Help Dog Missing for 3 Years Get Home

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She quickly mobilized the network of volunteers and broke the 2,500-mile trip from Florida to California into four days and 30 legs of driving. Each volunteer drove about an hour and a half and some volunteers signed up to spend the night with Smoke in motels or houses.

Smoke's trip began on July 4 and he was scheduled to arrive home to Hough on Sunday night.

McNally said that volunteers from the road have been checking in with her and she has heard from them at Smoke is "really adapting" and "a real sweetheart."

"He cuddles up and goes on the next route," she said of his car-hopping.

"People from all over the country that I've never met are doing all the driving for him," McNally said. "It's almost addicting. Once you do it once, you just want to do another. It feels so good to be able to help a dog."

Gamache, the pet detective, even volunteered to drive a leg of the trip. He happened to be in California, so he cancelled his flight home in order to drive Smoke part of the way.

"This is amazing how people have come together all the way across the United States, and I didn't expect it to be like this," he said. "It's inspiring to watch. A lot of our cases don't always have happy endings."

Hough is at home eagerly anticipating the return of his dog so that his family can once again be whole.

"I'm very thankful for the people helping," Hough said. "It's just amazing that we're getting him back."

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