Dog that went missing during Storm Franklin has finally been found

After a three-day search, Storm Franklin's missing dog was discovered in the Mournes.

With the help of some ham, a dog that spent two nights on the Mourne Mountains under the terrible weather conditions of Storm Franklin has been located safe and well. Molly, the springer spaniel, went missing after a stroll with her owner, Ricky Lyle, on Sunday. Ricky then spent hours feverishly attempting to find her until the weather forced him to turn back.

Against all odds!

On Sunday and Monday, Storm Franklin battered Northern Ireland with winds of nearly 80 mph and heavy rain, wreaking havoc on the Mournes. However, on Tuesday, it was announced that a park ranger had spotted the dog. Molly had been successfully lured down the mountain with some ham. Ricky told BBC News NI that he was over the moon to be reunited with his five-year-old rescue dog. Ricky expressed his joy and said:

I actually can't believe that we got her, I can't put it into words what it's like to have her back with me.

Ricky went out first thing Monday morning and again on Tuesday in the hope of finding her. The loving dog owner had left all hopes of finding his baby back. He said:

The weather conditions were so bad on Sunday night and Monday, I went out again on Tuesday and, sadly, I did think at one stage it would just be about trying to recover her body.
I was out looking at the bottom of cliffs and everywhere I could think of when I got a phone call to say that a dog had been spotted by some hikers near Slieve Muck.

Reunited and how!

Molly had been found and was in the care of a park ranger despite spending two nights in the bitter cold and strong winds. Aaron Caldwell, of the Mourne Heritage Trust, saw Ricky's message and went out on Tuesday to assist in the search for the missing springer spaniel. The 23-year-old told BBC News NI that he saw a dog chasing a hare near the mountain's edge and knew it was Molly right away.

I spotted her about 200m away from me and when I shouted: 'Molly!' She immediately turned around and stared at me.
I got a packet of ham out of my bag and I lured her over with it to show that I am friendly and she came right over.

For a dog that spent two nights in such severe conditions, she was in remarkably good condition. Ricky expressed gratitude to the Mourne engagement rangers, Mourne Heritage Trust, and everyone else who assisted in bringing Molly back to safety. She's currently at Ricky's house, where she's getting a lot of dog treats, and after some rest, he says she'll be back out in the big outdoors at his side.

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