When her beagle, Rocco, squeezed himself under the backyard gate and disappeared into the streets of Queens, 5-year-old Natalie Villacis refused to believe - as her parents reluctantly told her - that she would never see the puppy again.
That was in 2003.
Last weekend, Rocco came home - after being found in Georgia.
The prodigal pooch turned up in a shelter 850 miles away in Hinseville, and by a combination of chance and chip - the one embedded in his back - was reunited with Natalie, now 11, and her family.
LOST & HOUND IN QNS.