The owners of a dog that’s been missing on Hilton Head for almost three months refuse to give up, even bringing in tracking dogs with the hope of finding their beloved pet in time for Christmas.
Derek Kirchner, the owner of the 4-year-old mutt named Marley, who is part Whippet, said there have been no confirmed sightings since Sept. 25. But he’s not deterred.
Tracking dogs from North Carolina picked up a scent in a few areas where searchers are now targeting, Kirchner said. The Kirchners paid Epic Animal Rescue out of Asheville about $2,000 to have two dogs search for two days.
They’ve also put up nine trail cameras around the island in hopes they’ll capture an image of Marley. They purchased two of those cameras, with the rest donated.
“The community has been fantastic with helping out with resources,” Kirchner said.
Marley’s dash out the front door might just be another one of dozens of daily cases of missing dogs and cats. But her disappearance sparked an outpouring of help from residents and social media hashtags like #Bringmarleyhome and #marleyshiltonheadadventure. A public Facebook page dedicated to finding her has almost 2,000 members.
On Sept. 6, Marley ran from a house that Kirchner and his wife, Alex, were renting on Wanderer Lane off North Forest Beach Drive, near the Coligny Plaza Shopping Center. They were visiting from Atlanta.
By now, Kirchner says, Marley could be anywhere on the island or even off the island.
Kirchner believes it’s possible that Marley is still running around at night, which is why there have been no sightings. Other possibilities are that somebody took her in. They say they will pay the costs of having her returned.
The dog has dark shading covering both eyes and a dot on her head between the ears.
The Kirchners are asking anyone with information to call them at 678-549-6969 or 404-444-0569.
“If we could all just be together and have our Marley home, it would be the perfect Christmas!” Alex Kirchner posted on Facebook on Friday.