She spent $35,000 searching for her lost dog Janet Mihalyfis 5-year-old dog, Havoc (AP photos)
She spent $35,000 searching for her lost dog
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A District of Columbia woman has spent more than $35,000 in a year-long search for her beloved missing dog.

Janet Mihalyfi, 39, of the Georgetown section of Washington has hired psychics and private investigators, posted thousands of fliers, installed cameras in the woods and put out dog food at spots where the Rottweiler mix has reportedly been spotted.

Mihalyfi lost 5-year-old Havoc on Nov. 9, 2013, after she took him and her other dog off their leashes during a run in a wooded area. Just then, a deer bolted by and both dogs gave chase.

She hasn't seen Havoc since.

"Anybody that has a pet knows that they are a family member," Mihalyfi told The Associated Press. "I love him as I would anybody that I'm close with ... I can't give up on him."

Mihalyfi, an information technology director at a Washington consulting firm, said she has devoted every weekend since Havoc's disappearance to the search, which she called all-consuming, exhausting and depressing.

"It's been a very emotionally taxing year," she said. "It just feels like all these efforts why am I not getting closer to getting to him?"

Mihalyfi said her hope of finding Havoc, who has an implanted identifying microchip, is constantly renewed by tips from people who have seen her signs begging for information about his whereabouts. Mihalyfi estimates that about 30 to 40 percent of the tips have been accurate and said she has plenty of evidence that Havoc is spending his days in two wooded parks in the District that are thousands of square miles large.

Though Mihalyfi has gotten help searching from a group of volunteers sympathetic to her plight, she's also fielded some criticism for the amount of money and time she has spent searching for a dog.

"I know people are in shock by the number but there's also a correlation between how long I go after this," she said. "Lost-dog searches are expensive and this has lasted a year."

She said she can't imagine a better way to spend her money than getting a member of her family back.

Critical thinking challenge: If Janet knows her dog is in one of two parks, why is the dog so difficult to find?

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COMMENTS (66)
  • 1PaulS
    11/20/2014 - 04:46 p.m.

    This article is about a woman who has spent $35,000.00 in one year trying to look for her lost dog in Washington DC. Some people think that she is crazy and others think that she is inspiring.
    I think that this lady is a little crazy for spending this much money on a dog. She doesn't know if the dog is even in the same state or alive. But I also believe that she is sincere and is dedicated to finding her dog. I think that her story is inspirational because she is not giving up on something. She is not saying, "No" no matter what she hears or sees.
    I think that she is having such a hard time finding the dog in the two parks because it is a small dog in a very large area. Also, the dog could be moving a lot. It could be dead. It could be under snow or brush.
    I think that the larger question here is whether or not a dog should be treated as a member of a family or as a person. I, personally, think that they should be treated as a part of the family. I would keep searching if it were me.

  • 8mariahb
    11/20/2014 - 04:58 p.m.

    Janet has spent about thirty-five thousand dollars towards finding her dog and claims she know it is in one of two parks. The dog is so difficult to find because the two parks happen to be a spread of thousands of miles wide.

    Critical thinking question

  • 1madied
    11/20/2014 - 05:01 p.m.

    my opinion on this is that it is a lot of money and after a year she is still looking for him. i believe dogs are part of your family when you have one but they are not like humans they do not know how to survive in the wild and a year is a long time for one dog. if she is happy spending her money that way i think it is great except that is a lot of money like i have said to just be spending on him.

  • 8mariahb
    11/20/2014 - 05:15 p.m.

    Wow that is a lot of money. But if I were her and that was my dog I wokld most likely do the same. Janet has spent about thirty-five thousand dollars towards finding her dog and claims she know it is in one of two parks. The dog is so difficult to find because the two parks happen to be a spread of thousands of miles wide. Janet is still wishing as will find her poor dog soon.

    Critical thinking question

  • 3zoeyt
    11/20/2014 - 05:16 p.m.

    On November 9th 2013,Janet Mihalyfi lost her dog Havoc while walking in the woods. Her dog Havoc spotted a deer and took off after it. Janet has been looking for Havoc for a year now and she hasnt been more worried for her dog. She has spent more than $35,000 on her dog. She has put cameras in the woods and dog food where Havoc has been spotted. She says he is just like a family member she loves him that much and she wont stop looking until she finds him. She has missed a lot of work looking for Havoc.Havoc is spending his days in two wooded parks in the District that are thousands of square miles large.She said she can't imagine a better way to spend her money than getting a member of her family back.

  • 1MichaelHaf
    11/20/2014 - 05:25 p.m.

    Wow Mihalyfi!! Spending a lot of money on a dog just about $35,000 wow that's a lot. But my question is that how did the dog get out did the dog like take off without Mihalyfi knowing. Also, how old is this dog because if she had her for ever than too me the price would be worth it.

  • 8sydneyh
    11/20/2014 - 05:54 p.m.

    Response type: Sharing my opinion

    I think it is good that she is trying to find her dog and isn't giving up on him. I also think that she should be looking for him and if he is like a family member, then she shouldn't give up searching for him. Although I think it's a good thing that she doesn't stop looking for him, I think that spending over $35,000 looking for him is a little excessive. I think she should spend some money searching for him if he means that much to her, but she shouldn't have to spend that much money to locate him.

  • 9CarsonK
    11/20/2014 - 07:34 p.m.

    Janet Mihalyfi from Georgetown spent ruffly (pun intended) $35,000 to try and find her long lost dog, Havoc (who created some havoc too in a way). The incident began on Nov. 9, 2013. She lost the dog while on a run in the woods when suddenly a deer came across them and the dogs gave chase to said deer. This lead to Janet losing her pup, Havoc. Still searching, she states that "Anybody that has a pet knows that they are a family member" which is a true statement. I too own a dog and I would leap hurdles, travel across the country just to find my dog. I can completely relate to Janet Mihalyfi's struggle.

  • 5RyanM
    11/20/2014 - 08:33 p.m.

    In this article a woman named Mihahyfi is searching for her dog, Havoc, which she lost last year on Nov. 9the. This lady has spent $35,000 looking for dog in The District Of Columbia. The reason that she has been pursuing this dog so much is because she feels as if she is missing a member of her family. She has narrowed the location of her dog to two parks with the help of tips from people and investigators.
    Summary

  • Johnsooe
    11/20/2014 - 08:58 p.m.

    pro's: Janet gets to find her dog again, She gets to spend time finding a long lost family member, it will teach others about staying strong and having hope.
    Con's: it is costly, if she has all these clues and knows where the dog is she could just get it, the dog might die because of weather or mal-nutrition.

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