An Australian woman said she was reunited with her 11-year-old dog more than a year after he disappeared from her home.

Susan Fowler of Adelaide Hills said the Chihuahua, named Jack, disappeared from her yard more than a year ago and she believed him to be dead until she received a call from the Lost Dogs' Home in Melbourne, hundreds of miles from her home, the Melbourne Herald Sun reported Tuesday.

The shelter said Jack had been found by a family who brought him along when they moved to Melbourne. The microchip containing the information of his rightful owner was not discovered until he ran away from the family's home more than a year later.

"The message here is that when people find an animal they need to take it to the proper authority, where scanning can take place," said Sue Conroy, general manager of the animal shelter. "Never assume an animal doesn't have someone waiting."