A marathon runner decides to adopt the stray dog who accompanied him for more than 100 kilometers during the race.


"This is one of the happiest days of my life."

The incredible story of Gobi, a stray dog who found her father after joining him on a 155-mile race across China, has taken an even more incredible turn.

This time, it was him who went above and beyond for her.

Dion Leonard, a Scottish extreme marathon runner, met Gobi last month while competing in the 4 Deserts. March 2016, Gobi March, a six-day footrace through Asia's largest desert. The homeless dog who had been living near the starting point had apparently decided to join in on the fun, trotting alongside the other runners for the first 22 miles.

Gobi was back at it the next day, this time with Leonard as her running partner. She ran alongside him the entire stretch, and they became inseparable after that.

The athletic little dog kept up with Leonard until the very end of the exhausting race. Following that, he decided it was only fitting that he do everything in his power to bring her back to Scotland with him.

"Gobi chose me to be her lifelong pal," Leonard told The Dodo at the time.

Obtaining legal clearance to transport a dog from China to the United Kingdom is a time-consuming and difficult process, so Leonard left Gobi with a trusted friend and returned home to begin the months-long process. But then the unthinkable happened: Leonard learned last week that Gobi had gone missing.

Within a few days, Leonard was on a plane heading back to China to track her down.

Leonard scoured the city where Gobi was last seen with flyers in hand.

Because stray dogs are common in the area, finding the beloved pup may have seemed like looking for a needle in a haystack - but Leonard never gave up hope.

Despite how unlikely it all seemed, those efforts paid off.

Gobi was discovered on Wednesday. A local had spotted the dog and called Leonard, recognizing her from Leonard's flyer. The pair were soon reunited.

"When we arrived, I walked through the door, and she came running towards me, running around my legs and jumping up on me. "It was love at first sight," he told the BBC. "I'm going to try not to cry and not to swear tonight because I'm so excited. It's one of the most wonderful days of my life."

Gobi, too, was relieved to be back in the arms of the person she cares about the most.

It will still take some time for Gobi to be relocated abroad to her forever home with Leonard. But this time, he says, he's not going anywhere without her.

"I'll be here as long as it takes to ensure that everything is in order."