LEEDS — Got a new Pomeranian? Found it on the side of the road in Leeds and figure it’s a free pet?

Guess again. The dog belongs to Dr. Erich Baumann and his wife and they’d like to have it back.

The Baumanns and area police have been searching for the 5 1/2-pound dog, the color of a fox, since the end of June when it slipped out of its new home on River Road.

The dog’s name is Lady and for the Baumanns, the animal is of singular importance — it belonged to Erich’s mother-in-law who recently passed away.

“My wife is very upset,” Erich said. “She’s devastated. It’s the last thing she has from her mom and she’d like to have it back.”

Baumann is the primary veterinarian at the Animal Emergency Clinic in Lewiston.

You can’t fault the Baumanns for not trying hard enough to locate their runaway dog. Signs have been posted all over Leeds and Greene. They have checked with their local police departments, with Animal Control Officer Wendell Strout and with numerous shelters across the area.

Nothing. The Baumanns are pretty sure Lady was picked up by a passing stranger shortly after wandering away from their home.

One neighbor reported seeing a dark-colored car stop in the area where Lady had been spotted moments earlier. The assumption is that the driver invited the dog into the car and drove away.

Lady, said Erich Baumann, “is a really friendly little dog. She’ll go up to anyone and she loves to ride in cars.”

Erich said they’re not looking to get anyone in trouble — they don’t intend on pursuing charges or anything like that. They really just want to get Lady back.

Lady was very recently spayed, Baumann said, and should be sporting a shaved belly as well as an incision mark from the surgery. Anyone with information about the dog is asked to call their local police department.

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