When David Lecky received a phone call from a stranger on Saturday morning, he was getting ready to put up posters of his three missing dogs.
The woman was calling from near Sweetgrass, Sask., more than 350 kilometres away from Lecky's home in Leduc.
She told him she had three dogs that looked very similar to three dogs she saw on the news. She had them for a couple days, but didn't know who they belonged to.
"She read out the names from their collars and I knew they were mine," Lecky said, while on his way back to Leduc after picking up his pets.
One was on his lap, one was at his feet, and the other was trying to get over the console to snuggle up beside him.
"I've gotten more kisses in the past 10 minutes than I have in a long time."
'I learned my lesson well'
The dogs went missing on Wednesday night after Lecky decided to drive to the store to pick up some food.
He hopped in his Jeep, with his three dogs, Maggie, Dakota and Callie in tow.
Lecky ran into a store, leaving his vehicle running to keep the dogs warm. He also left it unlocked, and when he returned, his Jeep was gone. So were the dogs.
"I learned my lesson well. I'll never leave my dogs in my car again without it being locked," he said.
Over the following two days, he and his friend Richard Fitzwell drove far and wide looking for the dogs. On Saturday morning, the pair were just about to head out to put up posters when Lecky received the call.
From Leduc to Sweetgrass
"You don't know how excited I was. I was like a kid in a candy store, man," Lecky said. "I'd been just sick worrying about them. They're so little. I didn't know if somebody had dropped them off in the middle of nowhere and a dog or a coyote or something got them."
He and Fitzwell drove three-and-a-half hours to meet the woman at the Sweetgrass General Store. He didn't even get her name because he was so excited to see his dogs.
When Maggie, Dakota and Callie saw him, he said they showered him in kisses. They were excited too, letting out little yelps of joy as they ran to him and began leaping around his legs.
"They knew right away who Dad was," Lecky said. "I didn't want to ask too many questions because I don't care how they got there, I just care that they're home safe and sound."
He said the woman took great care of Maggie, Dakota and Callie — she even gave them a bath. He gave the woman $100 and a big hug before he left.
Jeep still missing
Without his Jeep, Lecky wasn't able to drive around without the help of his friend Fitzwell and he's forever grateful for his friend's support.
"He's been with me every minute that we've been looking. He is the best friend in the world right now, I tell you," Lecky said.
Lecky was sitting in the passenger seat of Fitzwell's vehicle while he travelling home with his dogs by his side.
His vehicle, a 2010 Jeep Compass with the license plate BBL 1228, is still missing. But for now, he isn't too concerned.
"The car can be replaced — my babies can never be replaced," he said.
"I hope they find it for sure, but I'm just happy that my babies are found."
And you can bet Callie, Dakota and Maggie were spoiled once they got home.
"Oh, look out," Lecky said with a laugh. "We're going to have a big party. They're going to eat the best they ever have. Biggest steak we can find for you, hey babies?"
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