Life with Dogs has a teary slideshow video link to Target's life. Target is the hero dog from Afghanistan that died when a worker at an Arizona shelter killed the wrong dog..
This tragedy is why Jan keeps telling someone who has lost a pet to hit the local and surrounding shelters right away and keep going back, daily if possible. If not, every other day. Don't call. The medium dog you describe as sable could be a large black or dark brown to someone else. No one is going to go look to see if there is a "yellow" cat there. Believe me, shelter workers are not going to go look and try to figure out from your description whether they have the animal. That's your job.
Please consider, if someone finds your lost pet, it could still enter the shelter as an "owner turn in" and be eligible for immediate death.
So if you think you recognize someone else's cat or dog, speak up! Don't wait until the next day to tell the owner. It's better to be wrong than sorry. Jan remembers a situation a few years ago where a meter reader left a gate open and two dogs escaped, were picked up and taken to the shelter. Someone recognized the dogs but didn't tell the neighbor until the next day. The neighbor went to pick up the dogs and they were already dead. This could have been avoided if the neighbor had been going regularly to the shelter to look for them and/or had been informed in time.
We're not making any judgments about anyone here. We just want to remind humans how crucial time is and how fragile a pet's life is once it enters a shelter. You can view the video In Memory of Target at Life with Dogs.
On a more positive note, a couple from Scotland took their two dogs on a vacation in Ireland. When the dogs were let out of the car for a rest, Rudy stopped in time but Rover went over an unseen cliff.
When Peggie ran to the wall she made it in time to watch helplessly as Rover fell another 150 feet (46 meters) landing on rocks and bramble. When asked her reaction when she realized Rover bounded over the wall, Peggie replied: "This is indescribable... we didn't realise the gravity of the situation until we got to the wall and looked over only to see Rover's head and front paws on a narrow ledge and the rest of him hanging over. He instantly lost his grip, and fell out of sight."
She went on to tell me "Our instant reaction was to assume him dead and frankly, we began to mourn. He couldn't survive! I expected to recover a corpse."
But Rover did survive the 400 foot fall from the cliff, perhaps because of the brief landing on a ledge..How they were able to rescue him is an amazing story. You can read it here.
Someone needs to put up a warning sign, as at least two other dogs have already died at this spot.