Every pet owner’s biggest nightmare is losing their furry friend. Whether they run away or someone steals them, separation from one’s animal is often the worst-case scenario.
And when they’re gone, they’re usually gone for good — but not always.
In a viral TikTok posted by creator @arielle.thompson (Arielle Thompson), she shared an unbelievable story of her husband’s family reuniting with their stolen dog after five years. “Literally the happiest of endings,” Arielle wrote of the once-in-a-lifetime event.
Here’s how everything unfolded.
A family reunited with their stolen dog five years later.
In her viral video, Arielle explained how her husband’s family reunited with their childhood dog years after someone stole him (the creator’s mother-in-law alleged that her ex-husband stole the family’s dog years ago).
The creator prefaced that while she was working on her laptop, her partner noticed a photo that looked eerily familiar. According to Arielle, her husband saw one of the dogs she had up for adoption at work in the picture and said he recognized it as his family’s lost pet.
She then displayed a photo of the dog and wrote, “He said that this dog looks like his old childhood dog that was taken from [his siblings] and his mom almost five years ago.”
In the following slide, Arielle posted an old photograph of her husband’s pet for context — and the subjects appeared identical. So, naturally, Arielle knew what to do next.
The family adopted their lost dog after five years of separation.
Right after Arielle’s partner revealed that the dog up for adoption looked like his family’s stolen puppy, she brought him and his sister to greet the dog in person. And sure enough, it was her!
According to the creator, the siblings immediately recognized their long-lost pet, with the dog clinging to her former owner as Arielle completed the adoption paperwork.
“She was ready to go back home,” the creator wrote in her video. However, the adoption wasn’t even the sweetest part of the TikTok — the mother’s reaction was.
The siblings’ mother cried when she first saw her stolen dog on FaceTime.
While Arielle’s husband and sister-in-law were undoubtedly excited about being reunited with their pet from childhood, nothing could’ve prepared them for their mother’s reaction to the unprecedented occurrence.
Arielle revealed that her mother-in-law was hospitalized during the dog saga and seemingly had no idea what was coming. The video concluded with Arielle’s husband and his sister FaceTiming their mom and reintroducing their family pet to her.
“Oh, Emma!” the siblings’ mother cried from her hospital bed on the other side of the camera.
“Their mom is in the hospital right now, and seeing [their dog] back home was the strength that she needed right now,” Arielle elaborated in her caption.
“What a crazy 24 hours it's been.” And naturally, other creators couldn’t wait to share their thoughts on the one-in-a-million situation. “This is the dream of anyone who has lost a dog,” someone wrote. “You guys are so blessed.”