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Simon gets truck and pet back.

A FAMILY has been reunited with its cherished pet dog and the pick-up truck which were stolen six days ago.

Simon Merchant, of Ash Hurst Farm, Shilton, is delighted at the return after thinking he had lost his Australian cattle dog, Healey, for good.

Raiders stole his Mitsubishi pick-up - and Healey, who was sitting in the back - from outside his home on Saturday afternoon.

The theft was reported in Wednesday's Evening Telegraph but the much- loved pet is now back in the safe care of Mr Merchant, his wife and three children, after kind actions by the public. His green pick-up was recovered on Monday night from near Newbold Verdon, in Leicestershire, although the stereo had been ripped out and pounds 3,000 worth of tools were missing.

Healey was found on Saturday afternoon by a middle-aged couple in Winterton Road, Bulkington, who took care of the animal and put a notice in a local shop window.

A friend of Mr Merchant, who also lives in Shilton and was aware of the incident, saw the notice and, recognising the description, told him the good news.

Mr Merchant, aged 36, a self-employed farrier, collected Healey from the couple on Tuesday night.

He said: "She ran straight out of the house into the back of my truck.

"I thought I had lost her for good because it seemed like I was looking for a needle in a haystack.

"The children are really pleased and the baby was laughing his head off in the car when he saw Healey.

"I'd like to thank the Evening Telegraph for its help."

CAPTION(S):

REUNITED: For Simon with 22-month Wyatt and Healey the dog - all are delighted to be back together
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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Feb 8, 2003
Words:285
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