NC man fostering dog travels hundreds of miles to adopt her

Some say there’s nothing stronger than a bond between a man and his dog. That couldn’t be truer for one North Carolina man who found himself driving hundreds of miles this weekend just to reunite with his four-legged friend.

Randy Gantt and his wife, Jane, are foster parents for dogs that are mistreated and abused. Their most recent foster, JoJo, was a stray and was extremely malnourished and riddled with worms. So they helped her gain weight over a two and a half month period and then sent her to a Humane Society to be adopted.

Well just days after JoJo left, the Gantt’s knew they had to get her back, even if it meant driving halfway across the country.

“The drive wasn’t that bad, because I had driven those distances before, but I guess this time I am on a mission,” said Gantt.

Gantt is on a mission to get his foster dog back.

“Obviously she made enough of an impact, I am up here getting her,” said Gantt.

It all started a few months ago when Gantt’s wife, Jane, brought JoJo home from an animal control agency where she was just hours away from being euthanized.

“She had been picked up and was wild and a stray,” said Gantt. “When we got her you could see her rib cage and the hip bones.”

While JoJo was at the Gantts, she went from 34 pounds to a healthy 45 pounds. But she wasn’t just growing size, she was also growing on Gantt.

“She started sitting in the chair with me and watching TV,” said Gantt. “I had a dog Ernie years ago. I had to have him put down, but it was similar with him. He was a stray that we picked up ourselves, or our son did, so Jo filled that niche for me.”

But because the Gantts foster multiple dogs every year, Gantt didn’t think anything of their special bond. So when JoJo was healthy enough, she was transported to the Coulee Region Humane Society in Onalaska last Monday.

“She adjusted very well and was just a bubbly personality,” said Amber Grosch, the kennel manager at the Coulee Region Humane Society.

But it didn’t take much longer, for the Gantts to realize they had made a mistake letting JoJo go.

“After we put her on the transport truck, Jane and I didn’t say anything to each other about it, but the next day I sent her a note and said, ‘I think we have to get Jo back’ and she said, ‘I agree.'”

And so the hunt began to track down exactly where JoJo was. Randy’s wife did some searching and finally sent an email to the Humane Society.

“He has never, from my understanding, felt this way about a dog before. They do a lot of foster, from my understanding, so that’s a true connection right there,” said Grosch.

And that connection is what brought Gantt all the way to Wisconsin to adopt JoJo.

“I don’t know what her life was before Jane picked her up, but we know what it’s been since then and we know what it will be now,” said Gantt. “We have a long drive the next two days, but you are worth it.”

When JoJo gets back to North Carolina, the Gantts are going to enroll her in obedience classes.