After long disappearance, Rep. Schneider's pet yellow Labrador retriever is home safe

A lost dog story that captivated canine lovers on both sides of the political aisle and around the world has reached a happy ending for U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider and his family.

More than a week after bolting from a dog sitter and disappearing, the Schneiders' yellow Labrador retriever, JoJo, was found this past weekend and is safe with her humans.

"We are overjoyed to have JoJo safely home," said Schneider, a Deerfield Democrat who represents Illinois' 10th District.

According to Schneider, the easily frightened JoJo got spooked by something and took off the morning of April 16.

Schneider quickly posted photos and video of Jojo to social media and notified local police, but she didn't turn up.

The Schneiders and many neighbors spent the weekend looking for JoJo and she was spotted April 18 - but she ran into a Bannockburn forest.

More social media posts attracted comments from dozens of supporters and hundreds of shares. Lost dog flyers went up in the area, too, bringing more attention to the missing pooch.

The Schneiders also got assistance from Jen Freels, who helps families find lost dogs.

"Jen was invaluable in helping us develop our search approach, designing and posting signs, flyers and social media and ultimately bringing JoJo home," Schneider said.

Based on sightings, the search focused on a Bannockburn stormwater reservoir managed by the Lake County Forest Preserve District.

With help from forest district police Officer Sam Diaz, JoJo was found at the reservoir late Sunday night.

Rob Dann, Schneider's brother-in-law and a retired veterinarian, made a house call to examine JoJo. Aside from some ticks that needed to be removed and a small scratch, she was "remarkably healthy," Schneider said.

The Schneiders are grateful for the support they received from the community.

"We could not have found her without the efforts of friends, neighbors (and) people young and not-so-young who joined the search for JoJo," Schneider said. "We received words of encouragement from around the country and across the world."

U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider
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