Puppy’s touching tale told in book

Mowbray resident Marianne McLean and her sister Cecilia Pienaar who helped create the book Finding Emma.

Like many children who dread a visit to the doctor, our pets sometimes also become quite temperamental when they are in a veterinarian’s waiting room.

This is possibly how German Shepard Emma felt before she escaped from the vet and ended up wondering terrified along the Liesbeeck River for five weeks.

Emma is known by many who followed her story on Facebook after Mowbray resident, Marianne McLean, posted her family’s struggle to find the puppy online. Emma fled from the vet, shocked herself on an electric fence and hid out in the Liesbeeck canal in Observatory.

Ms McLean has since created a children’s book called Finding Emma, about her dog’s struggle on the river bank.

“The little puppy was brought into the world by my daughter who’s a vet in Robertson.

She joined our family as our new favourite little person and before she turned one, she was meant to be spayed.

“We took her to the vet, but she escaped and shocked herself on the electric fence before running straight into morning traffic from Mowbray to Observatory.

“When we heard about it, everyone went on foot to search for her. She hid for five weeks, terrified, traumatised and completely disorientated before finally being captured in a leopard trap as the only means of breaking her spell of terror. We even got a dog whisperer out who said that we shouldn’t try too hard to get her out because she is terrified of people,” said Ms McLean.

After spending every evening with Emma on the Liesbeeck’s banks, the family managed to lure her into a leopard trap containing food. Once she became familiar with walking into the trap to collect food each day, she was eventually rescued.

After hearing the reaction from people about how emotional they were when Emma finally returned home, McLean was encouraged to write Emma’s tale.

The children’s book has 77 pages and 38 illustrations done by her sisters, Cecilia Pienaar and Elisabeth Martens.

“We’ve already had positive feedback from children at the age of three years old who enjoyed the book, to those aged 82 who read it and cried over it. All proceeds from the sale on each book will go to the recently formed John Moore Animal Welfare Foundation.”

The books sells at R80 and is available at local vets. For more information call Marianne McLean on 021 696 5610 or 083 461 9892.