Four days after two women rescued a lost dog at Country Thunder music festival in Florence, Arizona, he was reunited with his owner.
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See a full day inside Country Thunder Arizona as recorded through Snapchat Spectacles on Sunday, April 9, 2017.
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azcentral.com and KMLE Country 107.9 find out: How well do fans at Country Thunder Arizona know the festival’s lineup? Thomas Hawthorne/azcentral.com
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Country rockers LANCO partied with the crew of a pirate ship-themed bar on the last day of Country Thunder on Sunday, April 9, 2017. Credit: Ben Moffat/azcentral.com
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azcentral music critic Ed Masley caught up with Joe Bonsall and Duane Allen of the Oak Ridge Boys after their set at Country Thunder on Sunday, April 9, 2017. Ben Moffat/azcentral.com
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Randy Helm leads the morning Cowboy Church at Country Thunder Arizona on Sunday, April 9, 2017. Patrick Breen/azcentral.com
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Tyler Farr spoke to KMLE Country 107.9 about traveling to Guam to play for the troops and more before playing at Country Thunder Arizona 2017. Credit: KMLE
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Randy Rogers of the Randy Rogers Band talks about how where he’s playing inspires him and more with KMLE Country 107.9 at Country Thunder Arizona 2017. Credit: KMLE
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Arizona native Dierks Bentley talks about what he misses most about his home state with KMLE Country 10.79 at Country Thunder on Friday, April 7, 2017. Credit: KMLE
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Arizona native and Country Thunder Arizona ambassador Harry Luge played a few songs from KMLE Country 107.9 in Florence on Saturday, April 8, 2017. Credit: KMLE
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azcentral.com music critic Ed Masley interviews country artist Joe Nichols at Country Thunder Arizona on Saturday, April 8, 2017. Thomas Hawnthorne/azcentral.com
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Though it’s more than a 25-minute walk from the main stage, the Ponderosa campground still parties hard at Country Thunder Arizona. We catch up with Jacob Halaby on Saturday, April 8, 2017. Patrick Breen/azcentral.com
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Country Thunder Arizona 2017 artist Aaron Watson played some hits in the KMLE Country 107.9 Casino in Florence on Friday, April 7, 2017. Credit: KMLE
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Jon Pardi talks Country Thunder Arizona show, ACMs and how he takes care of his voice with KMLE Country 107.9 on Friday, April 7, 2017.
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16 teams compete for the golden Solo cup trophy in the Beer Olympics at Country Thunder Arizona each year in Florence, Arizona.
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Chris Young talks Country Thunder Arizona and more with KMLE Country 107.9 DJs on Thursday, April 6, 2017. Credit: KMLE
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Country-music duo LOCASH played a campsite concert for the winners of a KMLE Country 107.9 radio station contest at Country Thunder Arizona on Thursday, April 6, 2017.
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Singer Terri Clark talks country music and her radio station before she plays Country Thunder Arizona in Florence on Thursday, April 6, 2017. Patrick Breen/azcentral.com.
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Kaila White, a reporter with azcentral.com, explains the essentials one should take if going to an outdoor music festival in the desert such as Country Thunder or Coachella. Tom Tingle/azcentral.com
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After four days, lost dog at Country Thunder reunites with owners
Inside Country Thunder Arizona 2017
Country Thunder Arizona trivia: How well do you know the lineup?
LANCO mingle with campers at Country Thunder Arizona
Catching up with the Oak Ridge Boys at Country Thunder Arizona
See inside Cowboy Church at Country Thunder Arizona
Tyler Farr talks playing for the troops, more with KMLE at Country Thunder Arizona
Randy Rogers talk country you can dance to with KMLE at Country Thunder Arizona
Dierks Bentley on what he misses most about Arizona with KMLE
Watch Country Thunder Arizona ambassador Harry Luge in concert from KMLE
Joe Nichols talks Country Thunder Arizona
Ponderosa campground parties from afar at Country Thunder Arizona
Aaron Watson plays KMLE Casino concert at Country Thunder Arizona
Jon Pardi talks Country Thunder Arizona with KMLE
Beer Olympics at Country Thunder Arizona
Chris Young talks Country Thunder Arizona
LOCASH surprises Country Thunder Arizona campers with concert
Catching up with singer Terri Clark at Country Thunder Arizona
What you HAVE to bring to a desert music festival
As the pair of women waited in line outside the portable showers at the Country Thunder Arizona music festival’s campgrounds on Saturday, they noticed a spooked dog sprinting down the dirt road.
“We looked at each other like, ‘Oh my God, it’s killing us. Do we go get him? Not go get him?’ ” said Shelby Fettkether, who saw the dog with her friend, Sidney West. “We saw him digging in the trash and we were like, ‘We can’t handle it.'”
Dogs are allowed at Country Thunder in Florence but sometimes get lost or run away from fireworks or loud music.
Fettkether said she went to help the dog, and he came straight to her. They took him to law enforcement, who offered little help, so they ended up bringing back the dog to their campsite.
Helping ‘honey’ find his home
Cell reception is poor all over the desert campgrounds, so they couldn’t post for help. They heard rumors he might be a farm dog or a stray, but they thought he was sweet, calm and relaxed enough that he must belong to someone, so they bought him dog food and let him stay the night, even coaxing him out when he dove under a neighbor’s RV.
“This dog, he was so timid when we had found him. He was scared of the loud noises,” Fettkether said. “We kept him warm – he was a snuggle bug – but he didn’t want to walk anywhere.”
One of the people in their group started calling him “honey,” which he responded to. By Sunday night, they reported him to the lost and found, and Country Thunder notified all attendees and posted on social media about the dog.
Unsure of what to do, Fettkether decided to take him home with her to Surprise in hopes of buying more time to find his owners.
“I find a lot of lost dogs and I can’t ever leave them, but I’ve never been able to find an owner,” she said. She was worried he would cause trouble with her two dogs, but he fit right in, snuggled up on the couch. By his second day with her, he warmed up and started wagging his tail, she said.
Eventually a woman found Fettkether through posts about the dog on Facebook and said she was sure the dog was her boyfriend’s.
Reunited after a big scare
She said the dog and his owner arrived at the campgrounds early Saturday morning to drop off supplies for her, and in the process the dog jumped out of the Jeep and ran away. The owner crashed his Jeep while looking for his dog and was injured, Kettkether said she told her.
After much coordination, they were able to reunite Wednesday night.
“As soon as he saw his owner, I’ve never seen him so happy,” Fettkether said. “Oh my God, this dog was pulling and running to him and jumping up and kissing him. You could tell he knew he was home. He knew who his owner was. It was incredible.”
And the dog’s name is Buddy – no wonder he responded to “honey,” she said. She took video of the reunification, and in it the owner is wearing a cast on his right arm.
The Republic was unable to contact the dog’s owner or his girlfriend.
“It’s definitely quite the reunion. It was a lot more adventure than we had anticipated in finding this dog,” Fettkether said. “Honestly, it was really rewarding.”
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