MILLIE the springer spaniel had no idea of the trouble she would cause when she went off exploring.
But her owners, the Marshalls, were left frantic when they realised the five-year-old dog had gone missing from their holiday home at the Solent Breezes Holiday Park in Hook Lane, Warsash.
And when they ran off down the beach looking for their beloved pet, she was nowhere to be found.
Luckily the wandering pooch had been found by a pair of ladies out for a stroll, who knew exactly what to do.
They took her to the Stubbington Ark animal shelter where they checked her over and scanned her and soon found the microchip that contained all her details.
Within hours she was reunited with the grateful family.
Deana Marshall said: ‘Millie pushed her nose through our sliding doors to open them and ran off along the slipway to the beach.
‘I had just come out of the shower so couldn’t run after her.
‘When she goes on the beach, people throw stones for her and she runs to catch them.
‘When I did get on the beach some passers-by told me a couple of ladies had gone up the beach with my dog.
‘Despite looking for Millie and the ladies, they had disappeared.
‘I ran back to the holiday home and alerted the manager.’
The Marshalls, who come from Epsom in Surrey, had been staying at the park in their holiday home for a month over the summer.
Mrs Marshall added: ‘My distress immediately turned to relief on hearing Millie was safe – if it hadn’t been for the microchip, I don’t know what would have happened to her.’
Head of fundraising at the Ark Vanessa Eden said: ‘It’s cases like this that highlight just how important it is to get your dogs, cats and microchipped.
‘So many of the animals we receive here each year never get reunited with their owners and we have no way of finding them.
‘Fortunately, this time there was a happy ending. But if the Marshalls hadn’t microchipped Millie it could have turned out very differently and who knows where Millie could have ended up.
‘We provide a microchipping service at The Ark.
‘All you need to do is ring up and make an appointment.’
The Ark charges £12 for the service, most vets charge around £25 to £30.
The microchip is smaller than a grain of rice and has a unique identification number which is entered with the owner’s details on to the national Petlog database
The procedure is no more painful than a regular injection.
For more information go to stubbingtonark.org.uk or call (01329) 667541.