Woman finds pet dog lost in Philippines' Typhoon Haiyan a year ago

MANILA (AFP) - A Filipino woman has been reunited with her dog a year after the pet went missing in the chaos of the country's deadliest ever typhoon, she told AFP Tuesday.

The nine-year-old mongrel named Bunny survived giant waves wrought by Super Typhoon Haiyan, but went missing in the upheaval that followed the November 8 tragedy, owner Ailyn Metran told AFP.

"I never lost hope. God saved Bunny from the storm surge, so why would he let her die afterwards," Metran said.

Metran and her husband found their emaciated pet rooting through a trash bin in the central city of Tacloban last month.

Tacloban bore the brunt of the storm, one of the worst disasters to hit the Southeast Asian nation, which left more than 7,350 people dead or missing.

"We saw a dirty stray dog that looked like her. I called out her name and she came, asking to be cradled," Metran said.

Metran, 34, who works at a state health insurance company, said her family had fled their Tacloban home ahead of the typhoon but left three pet dogs behind.

Two of the dogs drowned, but somehow Bunny survived and when her owners returned two days later, they found her whimpering inside a bedroom.

However they were forced to leave the city in the upheaval that followed. Unable to take Bunny with them, they left her in the care of relatives, but the dog soon went missing in the turmoil that gripped the city after the storm, Metran recounted.

"For many victims who have lost nearly everything, their pets are important because they represent a semblance of their previous lives," Anna Cabrera, executive director of the Philippine Animal Welfare Society, told AFP.

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