Marathon runner looking for his four-legged running partner who went missing

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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – A shetland sheepdog, or sheltie, who can run with his owner for miles is missing from Myrtle Beach.

The dog looks like Lassie and people who know the dog know him as the little running celebrity.

“Little Lassie,” or Jake, and his owner were going on their typical run through Marina Parkway on Saturday morning. Frank Pepp said that’s the last time he saw his dog.

“I had a lapse and he got out of my eyesight and I’ve been searching for him ever since. We’re on Marina Parkway, which is amazing bicycle and running trails, I was doing what I shouldn’t have been and using these off-road trails where Jake can run without a leash, where there are no cars and people,” said Pepp.

Pepp has reached out to local vets and both the Grand Strand Humane Society and Horry County Animal Care Center. No one has heard anything.

He said Jake is not a typical dog, as the animal has run thousands of miles with the Grand Strand Running Club.

“He had plenty of exercise at the time. He had run at least 17 miles in the last 24 hours,” Pepp said. “I am a running coach and he’s my best client. He’s just an incredible boy; it was a wonderful match for the both of us.”

Jake is Pepp’s running partner, but most of all, his best friend. The owner has put up more than 200 flyers around the Marina Parkway area and across U.S. 17 and 76th Avenue. He said hundreds of shares on Facebook will hopefully help spread the word even more.

“I think we all call him Little Lassie until we realize his name is Jake,” said Kristin Smith, one of Pepp’s Grand Strand Running Club partners. “He’s a very friendly dog, just super sweet. I was running up and down the trails, and we just haven’t seen him. The more people that help find him will be better for both Frank and Jake.”

Pepp and others said they still have hope that Jake is out there.

“He has had six previous owners to me and I’m the sixth owner that took, and it’s because I could get him so much exercise,” Pepp said. “He’s at most of our group runs. I think everyone is amazed at what he can do, that no one has ever seen a dog run like him and be able to go on 20 miles and enjoy the whole thing.”

Anyone who spots Jake can call Pepp at (843) 882-7397, or click here to directly reach out to WMBF News’ Pet Place and submit a form.

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