A California woman who went to great lengths to find her lost dog — from a bikini-clad roadside protest to fasting to garner media attention — has been reunited with her beloved pet, a Chihuahua named Chispita.
When Arlene Corona’s dog went missing, the 20-year-old Calif. native searched for her everywhere: she put up flyers around her neighborhood, and when that didn’t work, she stood in nothing but a bikini and high heels on a La Jolla, Calif., street corner with a lost dog sign.
Corona, a 20-year-old student at California State University, San Marcos, hoped the stunt would attract enough attention to motivate anyone with clues about her pooch’s whereabouts to come forward.
It did, and Corona has now been reunited with Chispita, thanks to a local high school student who came forward with information. The student, named Daniel, called Corona’s mother and told her the dog was safe. He also encouraged a school nurse, who had been harboring the Chihuahua, to give Chispita back.
According to Corona and her mother, the nurse knew the dog belonged to Corona, and students had already encouraged her to return the pooch to its owner before Daniel made the call, local station KGTV in San Diego reported.
But before her happy reunion with Chispita, Corona had stood on the street corner for six days, all the while fasting and shivering in the chilly weather. She was featured on local stations and in newspapers.
Corona’s antics attracted unwanted sexual attention from male passersby. A man who identified himself as Merl claimed he had Chispita, but when Corona responded he sent her a picture of his genitals.
Corona cut off contact and halted her bikini protest. After her mother’s conversation with the student, however, Corona and Chispita were finally reunited on Tuesday.
“It’s amazing to have her back. I just will never let this happen again,” Corona told KGTV.
Chispita will be equipped with a new microchip to ensure she doesn’t get lost in the future, KGTV reported.
Corona’s mother, Arlene Ochoa, thanked the student, named Daniel, in a public Facebook message.
“Finally our lives are back to ‘normal,’ this past two weeks have been very hard,” she wrote. “I’m appalled that a student called me and urged Ms Bane and Julia [the school nurse] to return the dog, what a great kid teaching two ‘adults’ a lesson! I love you Daniel!!!”