A lesson I learnt as a youthful officer cadet when I lost my dog on the thousand-acre Royal Military Academy Sandhurst training area – and was beside myself with un-officer’ly panic.
If your dog runs off when you’re out and about, whether it’s chasing deer, bicycles, another dog or has just ‘b*ggered orf’ as some may say – nine and a half times out of ten, s/he will return to where you parked your car, or to where you set out from.
It’s not infallible obviously, and doesn’t take into consideration awful eventualities like an argument with traffic or whatever, but it’s a good and reassuring guide to hold in your head instead of panic.
Panic is tiring. And not constructive. So, head back to the car, whistle/call as you go and keep your fingers crossed. It really, honestly, is a tip worth remembering!
(So, my dog on the military training area, all those years ago: when I eventually gave up looking and headed back to Sandhurst, there she was, sitting on top of the car, a terrier-shaped silhouette marking out my car in the sea of serried ranks that is the car park of a Military Academy. She ruined the uniformity of the line, but heavens I was glad to see her!)