BELGRADE — AWOL yellow Labrador retriever Rebel was reunited with his owner Sunday morning after spending 10 nights roaming outdoors.

He was 5 pounds lighter, laden with ticks and promptly placed on a course of de-worming and disease-prevention medication at a veterinarian visit Monday.

But Rebel’s owner was ecstatic. Priscilla Ormsby, 70, of Jay, got phone calls all day Saturday from people who had seen her 12-year-old dog in the Belgrade-Sidney area — where he got loose Oct. 18 — but were unable to capture him.

Ormsby spent Saturday night at the Sidney home of Dominic and Suzanne Patenaude and got a call early Sunday saying Rebel had been seen near Hammond Lumber Co.’s Belgrade yard.

As Ormsby drove there, she saw her dog cross Route 27 and plunge into Belgrade Stream.

“I walked down the banking, and he was starting to swim across,” she said. “I called him and he swam back and threw himself in my arms. He was sopping wet, but I didn’t care. It was a very happy ending.”

Ormsby had spent four nights keeping vigil in her car in a field near the Belgrade-Sidney town line where Rebel occasionally was sighted. She said she was grateful for the assistance she received in her hunt.

On Monday afternoon, Ormsby and her dog were at home resting after a morning trip to Pine Tree Veterinary Hospital in Augusta, where veterinarian Peter Davis gave Rebel a checkup.

“He’s pretty happy not to be out roaming in the woods,” she said.

The missing dog case was solved when a woman knocked on the door of the Patenaude’s home early Sunday to report seeing Rebel near the lumber yard.

“I feel bad, I didn’t get her name — I was so focused on getting on my dog back,” she said.

Dominic Patenaude on Monday credited the successful reunion to the constant stream of phone calls from people who had learned about Ormsby’s dedicated search and overnight vigils in a field.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

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