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GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP) — It was a reunion long in the making.

A family from the North Carolina coast was reunited with their dog in the Piedmont Triad after a year apart.

Mochie, a five-year-old hound mix, ended up more than 200 miles from home at the Guilford County Animal Resource Center. 

His owner, Emerald Tinae, made the trip from Wilmington to pick him up on Thursday. “When they [Guilford County Animal Services] called me on the phone to tell me the microchip was mine…I was already crying,” Tinae said. 

It was a reunion with a lot of tail wags and dog kisses. “He was such a baby,” she said. “He was an escape artist, but he was a baby.” 

Tinae told FOX8 Mochie got out around a year ago. “He’ll open doors, windows. He’ll get out. When he wants out, he’ll get out.” 

She didn’t know what happened to him and thought he might have been stolen. 

Mochie was captured by Guilford County Animal Services staff as a stray dog last November and brought into the center on Guilford College Road in Greensboro.

“We have never had something quite like this happen,” said Kendelle Federico, the foster coordinator. She found Mochie’s microchip, but the information was out-of-date. 

It wasn’t until Tinae’s daughter, who lives in New York, saw the adoption pictures online that they knew where to find him.   

“120 days is an extremely long time for any dog. That’s probably what we would consider a long-timer,” Federico said. “The fact that we were able to reunite him to someone so far away… to someone who doesn’t live in this county is really great.”

After Tinae filled out adoption paperwork, Mochie was on his way back with his family to Wilmington. “He’s as sweet as can be…and very, very protective. He’s not going to let nothing happen to you,” she said. 

Tinae told FOX8 Mochie will be reunited with four other furry friends: three chihuahuas and a golden retriever at home. 

Federico encourages anyone with a pet to get them microchipped. She said it can only help find your pet faster if they go missing.