It was a sad day last month when Sparky the dog ran away during his regular outing near Fort Funston. While frolicking off leash with a group of dog buddies, the 11-year-old Australian shepherd got separated from his walker and quickly disappeared into the underbrush.
Sparky was gone in an instant.
Bryan Mason’s 7-year-old son, Hank, was in tears. Mason and Holly Reeves, his fiancee and Sparky’s original owner, decided they were going to go all out.
“Sparky,” Mason wrote in an e-mail, “is family. As I plan to marry Holly, I want her to know what kind of commitment I have to her. As I try to help Hank grow into a man, I want to lead by example. This is what a man does. A man cries, and keeps taping things to light posts until somebody calls.”
So it’s a familiar story: Dog lost, flyers printed up, owners search areas where their pet might be.
But Mason took this dog search to a new level. He used an interactive Google map, a Facebook page, some workers from the personal errand service TaskRabbit, and 6 1/2 gallons of urine. (More about that in a moment.)