Sep 2, 2010 8:04 PM by David Ortiviz

Colorado State Fair finds missing beagle's owners

A little beagle is becoming quite the spoiled pup at the Colorado State Fair. He was found lost last week and it turns out his master is a cowboy living hundreds of miles away.

The beagle's name is Wiley and he's 9 months old. He's been getting the royal treatment at the fair. "He's definitely become the fair mascot this year," said Sheri Giordano, Box Office Manager at the fair. "He's unbelievably friendly," she added.

"An intern at the fair found him over at the rodeo," said Giordano. Over the weekend that's where Wiley got separated from his owner. J.R. Vezain a rodeo cowboy from Wyoming, was competing at the fair.

"It broke my heart that J.R. no longer had him," said Aspyn Coleman, J.R.'s girlfriend who lives in Lovell, Wyoming. Coleman says she bough Wiley for J.R. for his birthday in February. Since then, the two have been inseparable. "He had been one of J.R.'s best traveling partners," said Coleman.

Somehow during the fair, Wiley got away. "(J.R.) said he looked everywhere (for him)," said Coleman. But the Wyoming cowboy, was forced to leave Pueblo alone. J.R. had to go to Texas, where he's enrolled in college.

Over the past several days, Wiley has been in good hands. "We have food and water for him and toys and lots of company, so he gets to play," said Giordano.

The staff talked Wiley on walks everyday, but he also gets chauffeured on a golf cart on special occassions. On Thursday, the staff took Wiley for a dip in a doggy pool--which is part of the Dock Dogs attraction at the fair.

"Everybody has fallen in love with Wiley," said Giordano. Despite their admiration for Wiley, the staff knew they had to find his owners.

So Giordano called The Pueblo Chieftain newspaper to place a dog found advertisement. Aspyn called the paper to place her own missing dog ad, and that's when her prayers were answered. "Anything really is possibly if you pray about it, it was just a huge blessing," said Coleman.

The staff was also happy, but saddened when they found out J.R. lost his best friend in a rodeo accident weeks earlier. "So this poor boy just lost his best friend and rodeo buddy and two weeks later he lost his dog, his companion. So it's a heartbreaking story, but it also has a happy ending," said Giordano.

A state fair worker volunteered to take wiley back to Wyoming on Monday. "It's going to be really hard to say goodbye," said Giordano. But the little lost puppy will be back with his family, where he belongs.

Follow me on Facebook at David Ortiviz and on Twitter at @ortiviz

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