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BOCA RATON, Fla. –¬†For eight years, Penny Howard hoped that her dog, Pia, would find her way back home after she disappeared.

Last month, she finally got a call from an animal shelter, making her wish come true.

“She said, ‘They found your dog,'” Howard told WPLG. “I was in total shock. I always wondered these eight years, ‘Is she still alive? Oh, if I could only get her back and however much time she has left, I’m going to spoil the hell out of her.'”

Pia escaped from Howard’s home in November 2008. Howard¬†says she can’t describe the relief she feels to have her back.

“I cried for three days, just out of my mind with glee and relief,” Howard told the Sun Sentinel.

Pia was in bad shape when she was dropped off at the shelter. She had ticks, worms and wasn’t updated on shots.

She’s now in much better shape and is doing well at home.

Howard says she’s so glad to have her back.

“If you find a stray dog, take them immediately to a vet or one of the shelters and they can scan the dog, because there’s another owner grieving, and that dog can be returned if it has a microchip,” Howard said. “It’s the most important thing for all dogs.”