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A Santa Rosa family is celebrating having their Bernese mountain dog home for the holidays following the pooch's extraordinary journey across the Mayacamas mountains to as far away as the city of Napa, a distance of some 35 miles.

Equally as impressive as Boo surviving for a month in the wilderness were the lengths Mike and Beth Gallatin went to during their frantic search for the family's beloved pet, which vanished Nov. 21 during a nasty wind storm.

The couple hiked mountains and river valleys in Sonoma and Napa counties, posted thousands of fliers and hired a professional animal tracker. Beth Gallatin at one point even flew over Napa Valley in a rented helicopter hoping for a glimpse of the furry brown, black and white dog.

"We just felt we needed to do everything we could once we got down the path of looking for him," Beth Gallatin said this week. "We just couldn't stop."

The saga, which was chronicled on social media sites, drew dozens of volunteers and had neighbors in communities across two counties keeping an eye out for the lost dog. It all culminated Saturday in a joyous reunion near Glen Ellen.

"I can hardly talk about it without crying. Imagining this dog wandering around for a month, curled up in a ball sleeping, it was heartbreaking," said Stevi Hanson, whose home on Trinity Road was the site of Saturday's reunion.

The Gallatins never fathomed the drama that would unfold after Boo vanished Nov. 21. The couple, who have two teenage daughters, had finished moving into their new home in the McDonald Avenue neighborhood of Santa Rosa that very day, when the storm unleashed a fury that blew transformers and knocked out power.

Mike Gallatin is a landscaper and stonemason; Beth is the costume director for SPACE Performing Arts School in Ukiah, where the couple previously lived.

They put Boo in the backyard before leaving to pick up one of their daughters. When they returned, they were shocked to discover that the 5-year-old dog had bolted, apparently through a hole in a fence they didn't know existed.

Boo wore a flea collar but nothing else. Beth Gallatin said they'd removed the dog's harness, which had an identification tag, so that he would be more comfortable on the ride to Santa Rosa.

In the ensuing days the couple posted fliers and scoured their Santa Rosa neighborhood for signs of Boo. About a week later, they began receiving conflicting reports of sightings in Oakmont and in Calistoga.

The couple split up, with Beth Gallatin taking the aerial tour of Napa Valley while Mike canvassed the Oakmont neighborhood. But then a homeowner on Cavedale Road east of Glen Ellen reported seeing Boo, sending them in a new direction.

Members of the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Northern California joined the hunt. The Gallatins also contacted officials with Caltrans, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and police agencies across Sonoma and Napa counties to alert them to the search.

Around Dec. 10, a caller reported seeing Boo at a car wash in the Browns Valley neighborhood in west Napa. By road, that's a distance of about 35 miles from Santa Rosa. Boo likely covered many more miles, up steep mountainous terrain, to arrive at that point. But as was the case on numerous occasions, Boo was nowhere to be found by the time the Gallatins arrived in Napa.

The dog is a bit of a fraidy cat, despite at the time packing 105 pounds. People reported that Boo would not come near them. The Gallatins were particularly alarmed when the next reported sighting was of Boo running east along Trancas Avenue, a busy thoroughfare in Napa. A Napa County Animal Control Officer reportedly tried to capture the dog but told the Gallatins he was thwarted when Boo lunged at him.

The couple hiked the Napa River and on the advice of a local animal tracker left remnants of their clothes at various spots, along with food. A few days later, they received word that Boo had been spotted again in Browns Valley, and then captured on a wildlife camera on Cavedale Road back in Sonoma County.

That's when the Gallatins called professional dog tracker Karin TarQwyn, who as it turned out was flying to California last weekend to visit family. She told the Gallatins she was available to help and that she would be bringing along one of her tracking dogs.

Said Beth Gallatin, "We had sightings in two different counties. Either it's Boo, every Bernese is out, or my dog is magic."

The tracker wasn't needed. Last Friday evening, Hanson was taking a shower at her Trinity Road home when her husband, Blair Calder, yelled to her that the dog they'd all seen on the posters was in their yard.

Hanson immediately contacted the Gallatins, who rushed from Santa Rosa. But again, Boo was gone by the time they arrived.

Mike Gallatin decided to camp out overnight on Hanson's property. He'd brought a cooked piece of meat as well as cans of salmon, which he opened and set around his Toyota SUV.

With no sign of Boo by mid-morning Saturday, Mike dejectedly packed it up and left. Hanson said 20 minutes later, Boo bounded back into the yard. She phoned the Gallatins again. Mike returned and walked into the forest, laden with the meats and fish. He sat down and started calling for his dog.

A few minutes later, Mike heard a crashing sound in the brush. Boo peeked out inched ever so slowly in Mike's direction. Recognizing who it was, the dog bounded over.

The reunion occurred a month to the day after Boo's disappearance. Hanson said Mike Gallatin was so overcome he could barely talk. When Beth arrived, she gave Hanson a small replica of a Bernese mountain dog she'd kept in her pocket while searching for Boo.

The Gallatins had the dog checked out by veterinarian Patrick Grant at Montecito Veterinary Center. Boo was covered with ticks and had shed 10 pounds, but that actually put him at his ideal weight.

"I joke that he went through an Outward Bound weight-loss program," Beth Gallatin said this week as Boo lay at her feet.

Boo now has an implanted microchip to help identify the dog should he ever get lost again. The Gallatins have ordered a GPS tracker for Boo to wear and also are not letting him out of the house off-leash until the fence is repaired.

Friends of the couple started an online fundraising campaign to help defray some of the expenses they incurred during the search. The donation site is at http://www.gofundme.com/5t5r7w.

Beth Gallatin said the couple plan to steer some of the money toward other individuals or groups that assist in searching for lost pets. They are planning to donate the two animal traps they ordered but that had yet to arrive by Tuesday.

The couple also were fulfilling a promise this week to remove all of the fliers they put up during the search for their dog. In their place, they've put up a single poster in every community they visited on their arduous journey to thank people for their help.

"Thank you! Boo is found. You all are angels," reads one of the posters at the intersection of Trinity Road and Highway 12.

And at the couple's home Tuesday, a candle burned inside a glass cylinder imprinted with the image of a Bernese mountain dog, on a mantel decorated for the holidays.

You can reach Staff Writer Derek Moore at 521-5336 or derek.moore. On Twitter @deadlinederek.