West Lothian missing pet searcher's thermal drone to be named after tragic family dog Rosie
A family dog who died after running away is to be honoured by having a heat-seeking drone to be used in future searches named after her.
The tragic ending to the search for Rosie, a black Cocker spaniel, had such a profound impact on Hazel Elliott from Muzzle Mutts who is a specialist in finding lost dogs that she had vowed to name the new hi-tech device after her.
Rosie, who was six at the time, was spending the day with her owner’s daughter Kiyomi Honjigawa, 28. The pair were playing in Union Park in Carrick Knowe on October 29 when suddenly Rosie bolted for the exit.
More than 60 people joined the search for Rosie as she made her way towards Edinburgh Park where the traffic got busy and avoided a near scare at a slip road by Hermiston Gait.
Muzzle Mutts, based in Deans, West Lothian, got in touch and provided thermal scopes in order to try to spot Rosie as it became dark. They also offered their expertise and contacted BEAR Scotland to slow down the roads as it had become apparent that Rosie was around the M8.
But unfortunately the family was informed hours later that Rosie’s body had been found on a west bound slip road by Heriot Watt university.
Janie and Tim Clilverd, Rosie’s owners said: “We feel so lucky and privileged to have had such a beautiful and affectionate perfect little girl. She was our little angel and she brought us so much joy and happiness.
“Thank you to everyone who came out and searched for Rosie.
“We had Rosie’s GPS tracker bought but it was not yet set up and I’d urge absolutely anyone with a dog to fit a GPS tracker.”
The family wanted to do something in Rosie’s memory and asked if they could help with Muzzle Mutts fundraiser for a thermal drone.
Kiyomi said: “So many people gave very generous donations and we smashed the target of £2,300. The drone costs around £3,500 but Hazel has already raised £1,100 to go towards it so we have the exact amount.”
She added: “I can never thank everyone enough who joined. I believe during different points of the day there were 60-plus people who came to look and offer help where they could.
“This isn’t including all those on social media, watching, waiting and sharing. Police Scotland and Bear Scotland did what they could slowing traffic and searching embankments. We searched till 8am on the Friday morning, until she was seen by a passer-by on the hard shoulder and reported to Bear Scotland who dispatched a unit to recover Rosie’s body.
"Alex from iCare Pet Crem in Whitburn was then so professional and helpful and took care of Rosie in a very dignified and caring way. He has now pledged to donate the cost of taking care of Rosie to this cause for which we are very grateful.”
Hazel, who will name the drone Rosie said: “Thermal scope work and feed stations covered by live cameras, camera drones and humane traps are available as well as advice and support for owners at Muzzle Mutts who are completely self funded.”
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