PALMDALE (CBSLA) — A dog stolen from its home in San Francisco last year was back with its owner Tuesday after being brought to a Palmdale shelter as a stray.

Jackson, a 6-year-old miniature Australian shepherd, was stolen the morning of Dec. 14 from his home in the Bernal Heights area of San Francisco, according to Don Belton, public information officer for the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Control and Care, and a website dedicated to finding Jackson.

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Jackson’s family had given up hope of finding their beloved dog after months of searching, but on Monday, the pup was brought into the Palmdale Animal Care Center after someone found him and thought he was a stray.

The center scanned the dog’s microchip and was able to contact his owner, Emilie Talermo. The owner initially thought the call was a prank, but after the center sent over a photo of the animal, she called some friends in the area to go pick up Jackson.

Jackson was reunited with Talermo early Tuesday morning.

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“It was an incredible experience,” Talermo said. “Everyone was so kind and empathetic towards the situation.”

Police said the accused dognapper, from Palmdale, was already in jail after being arrested on a different felony theft charge.

Los Angeles County Department of Animal Control and Care’s Director Marcia Mayeda hoped this story would encourage everyone to microchip their pet and keep the registry information up to date.

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