New Gloucester cancer patient hopes to find lost dog

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NEW GLOUCESTER — Don Irish and his fiancee Monique Nadeau are searching for their pug, Katie, who has been missing for almost four weeks. Irish has brain cancer and, Nadeau said, Katie would be a huge comfort to him.

Katie disappeared on Oct. 13 while Nadeau and Irish were at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Hospital in New Hampshire getting his glioblastoma removed.

Her daughter watched over Katie and their two other dogs during this time, Nadeau said. But one night, when her daughter was with her and Irish, Nadeau asked a neighbor to let the dogs out.

“And she’s not used to him,” Nadeau said.

“Either something spooked her or she took off to go find us,” she continued.

Irish and Katie have grown very close since she was adopted last year because she accompanies him while he trucks all over the country.

“She lived in the truck with me, so she and I were gone Monday morning through Friday or Saturday every week,” Irish said.

“She’s his other half,” Nadeau added.

Irish and Nadeau have not received any tips or information about Katie, aside from one about an hour after she escaped saying that she was up the road near Pineland Farms.

“We’ve pretty much contacted everybody we can think of,” Nadeau said, including nearby shelters, animal control and animal groups across the state. She and Irish have been hanging posters and recently bought some neon-colored posterboard to make them more visible. “It’s just kind of scary that we haven’t had any sightings or heard anything,” she said.

Irish theorized that Katie is with either people or animals.

“She’s a small dog, but she’s smart, and I think she’s got good survival instincts. She’s really healthy,” he said.

In addition to tags with Nadeau’s number on them, Katie also has a microchip.However, Nadeau is worried that people might not know about microchips or know to bring found animals into a shelter to be scanned for their owner’s name and contact information.

Irish “starts his radiation treatment on the 26th, and it would be a comfort, of course, to him because she’s just attached to him. She would help in the fight and the recovery for him. We’ve got a fight on our hands, and we need Katie to come back,” Nadeau said.

Anyone with information about Katie is encouraged to contact Nadeau at 650-4896.

Jane Vaughan can be reached at 780-9103 or at jvaughan@keepmecurrent.com.

Katie went missing nearly four weeks ago.