New York Dog Saved From A Storm Drain Successfully Returned To His Family 


If you’ve ever had a dog go missing, then you know what a horrible feeling it is… not knowing if you’ll ever see him again or what happened to him. 

Luckily, a small dog named Toto, which had been missing for three days in Rockland County, New York, was rescued by police and returned safely to his owner. 

Toto, then a 16-year-old Lhasa Apso dog, didn’t embark on an adventure to the magical Land of Oz, but thankfully had an equally happy ending to his story. 

trapped little puppy

When Toto’s previous owner died, his neighbor, Anna Marie Miller, adopted Toto and has had him for more than eight years now. 

“He was my neighbor’s dog, and my neighbor passed away, so I kept him,” said Anna Marie Miller in an interview for ABC News. 

That Tuesday, when little Toto went missing, Anna’s niece was alone with him in the house. When a smoke alarm went off, she opened the front door for a moment, and apparently, that’s when he went out. 

When Anna came home and noticed that her beloved pooch was missing, they immediately posted on Facebook, hoping that someone might see him. The entire neighborhood helped search for Toto, but he was nowhere to be found. 

“I thought maybe he was in a ditch someplace, or he was in the woods and that he died,” Miller said. “I was praying that they would find him.”

She added, “You know, you get attached to them. They’re just like part of the family. And, he is a good dog.”

On Friday, three days after Toto went missing, Anna’s neighbor was walking near Miller’s house and heard a dog barking. She found Toto stuck in a storm drain. The poor pup was probably there for three days without any food or water. 

The woman called Anna and the police straight away. 

policeman saving little puppy

The Haverstraw Police Department posted on their Facebook, “This morning, PO Walter Vega and Sgt. Steven Rosado, along with the Village of West Haverstraw DPW, rescued a small dog from a storm drain that had been missing for three days.”

“The dog was reunited with its owner 🐾,” said the post. 

Little Toto was evidently traumatized by being stuck in the storm drain for three whole days. 

Anna was so grateful to have her little boy back. She took him to the veterinarian for a check-up since he wouldn’t eat after being rescued. 

saved puppy in a human hand

“He’s not eating or anything. But, I think it takes time, you know?”, says Anna, hoping that after a couple of days, everything would return to normal. 

Thanks to the quick and adept reaction from the Rockland County police and fire department, once again, a beloved dog was thankfully saved and returned to his family. 

Here, you can see the rescue video of little Toto: