[[quoteright:287:[[WesternAnimation/SpongebobSquarepants http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/WheresGary_2216.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:287: [[TearJerker Have you seen this snail?]]]]

[[ABoyAndHisX A boy and his pet]] [[LoyalAnimalCompanion are nearly inseparable]], until the pet goes missing. For some reason, a character's pet will wander away from home, get kidnapped, or get himself lost some other way. This leads to two seperate storylines. On one side, the pet is incredibly lost, scared, and desperately [[TheresNoPlaceLikeHome trying to get home]]. The second story will involve the humans dealing with the loss of their pet, either by [[{{Wangst}} feeling miserable]] or by actively [[IWillFindYou searching for them]]. In the end, the two parties will eventually reunite, often leading to a CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming and maybe even AnAesop or two.

May overlap with IWillWaitForYou where the human refuses to give up on waiting or to get a new pet. When the pet has been driven away by a cruel owner instead of lost, it's ComeBackMyPet. The human equivalent of this is TheresNoPlaceLikeHome.

The {{trope namer}} is, of course, TropeyTheWonderDog.
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!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Film ]]

* ''Film/HomewardBoundTheIncredibleJourney'' and its sequel.
* ''TheAdventuresOfMiloAndOtis''. Milo the cat gets lost, with Otis trailing him, and they are trying to return home.
* ''Animal, Come Back Animal'' from ''TheMuppetMovie'' fits here.
* The final segment of ''Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas'' had Mickey searching for Pluto, who had run away and ended up at the North Pole.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]

* The original story ''Lassie Come-Home'' (1938) by Eric Knight was adapted into the beloved 1943 film ''Lassie Come Home'', which is almost certainly the TropeNamer, and probably the TropeCodifier as well.
* ''Ribsy'' by Beverly Cleary: Ribsy is left in the Huggins' car in the mall parking lot. He pushes the button that opens the window and gets out of the car, but when he tries to find his way back he gets into the wrong car and another family takes him home. He spends the rest of the book finding his way back home.
* Pretty much the entire point of the short story ''[[http://www.archive.org/details/lovelinessastor00phelgoog Loveliness]]'' (1899) by Elizabeth Stuart Phelps. The [[CharacterTitle titular dog]] is stolen and [[LittlestCancerPatient and his frail mistress]], heartbroken, wastes away during the several months when he is missing. He gets found and everybody gets better [[spoiler: and we learn that [[{{Anvilicious}} selling pets for medical experiments]] [[AndThatsTerrible is bad]] ]].
* There's a ''JimmyNeutron'' storybook titled ''Goddard, Come Home!'' Goddard goes missing, but, with help from a beagle named Billy, Jimmy is able to track him down to the hideout of the tyrannical robots who dognapped him.
** Goddard has actually gone missing about 3 times in the franchise, once in the above mentioned storybook, once in a comic from Nick Magazine and once in an actual episode of the series.
* A somewhat odd example appears in JamesHerriot's books - a farmer sadly sends off his old cow to the meat market, and when she breaks away from the herd and runs home, he is overjoyed and vows that she will never leave home again. Besides being in the original books, it was slightly edited for a children's story titled "Blossom Come Home".
* ''Literature/TheIncredibleJourney'', about two dogs and a cat crossing the Canadian wilderness to get home. This novel would form the basis for a 1963 film adaptation of the same name and, much later, ''HomewardBound''.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live-Action TV ]]

* In the opening flashback of one episode of ''PushingDaisies'', Digby goes on a journey to find Ned at boarding school.
* When [[MarriedWithChildren Buck]] runs away, half the show is him in the pound, the other half is the family finally noticing he's gone, trying to replace him, arguing about going to find him, then finally picking him up at the pound.
* The first episode of SkippyTheBushKangaroo is about Skippy getting kidnapped and having to find his way home.
* This happened many years ago on ''[[TheSoup Talk Soup]]'', when, in reference to a previous clip, John Henson was interrupted by an blurry foreground image of a bereft {{Gumby}} plaintively calling out for his lost horse, Pokey.
--> '''Gumby:''' "Pokey... Poooookey...!! ... Pokey?!"
--> '''John Henson:''' "No, I'm not Pokey."
--> '''Gumby:''' "Oh. Okay. ... ... ''[[TearJerker Pooookeyyy...!]]''"
** Fans of the show were, of course, devastated that Gumby had been left hanging. Eventually, with a little celebrity encouragement, there was a tearful reunion.
---> '''"POKEY!!!!"'''

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Newspaper Comics ]]

* At one point, [[CalvinAndHobbes Hobbes]] gets lost in the woods, and Calvin's parents have to go look for him at night. Calvin's mom even calls out "Hobbes! Where are you?!"

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Video Games ]]

* The "Highway Star" portion of ''EliteBeatAgents'' revolves around a pug's efforts to return home after being accidentally driven hundreds of miles away.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Comics ]]

* When Chev "escapes" in ''PapiNyang'' his owner spends a lot of time trying to find him, of course he's eventually trying to get home as well. Except she moved, to a place that would allow her to have cats (previously she was keeping her ownership of cats a secret).

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender: In the episode "Appa's Lost Days" we follow the kidnapped Appa fighting abuse, starvation and loneliness as he tries to find Aang. For an episode about a character who ''can't even talk'' its incredibly moving.
* ''SnoopyComeHome'' is a light-hearted look at the concept. At least, until [[spoiler:[[TearJerker Snoopy decides to go back to his original owner]].]] [[spoiler: And then Snoopy learns that his original owner lives in a pet-free apartment complex, so he says goodbye to Lila and returns to Charlie Brown.]]
* Perry the Platypus in the ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb'' episode "Oh, there you are, Perry!". [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMOdfwLNsSI The song for that episode is actually called "Come Home Perry"]].
* ''WesternAnimation/TheProudFamily'': Oscar accidentally loses Sugar Mama's poodle, who is naturally upset about this until his return.
* ''APupNamedScoobyDoo'': Scooby Doo runs away after feeling unappreciated, and of course, everyone goes looking for him.
* ''WesternAnimation/SpongebobSquarepants'': "Where's Gary?"
* ''Disney/{{Bolt}}''
* ''TheAristocats'': Duchess and the kittens are kidnapped and misplaced by the butler, Edgar. They try to find their way home while their owner worried frantically about them.
** ''Disney/OneHundredAndOneDalmatians'' also qualifies.
* Done with a twist in ''TheBraveLittleToaster'', in which the "pets" are household appliances. Radio even broadcasts one such story, which serves as motivation for the others.
* Spike leaves for an episode in ''{{Rugrats}}'', for a long enough period for Stu to go through several new pets, including [[HilarityEnsues a tarantula and pair of gerbils.]] Subverted on the Spike half of the story, though: [[spoiler: He gets taken in by a rich old man, who eventually brings him home.]] The man at the pound the Pickles go to even says this is a pretty common thing there.
** Another episode has Angelica kick Spike out after it refuses to participate in a pretend wedding ceremony the same time Tommy and Chuckie send her doll Cynthia on a boatride... down a sewer drain. Spike finds the doll in a garbage dump and, remembering Angelica, decides to leave it. However, when he remembers Tommy, he snatches it and heads back. No one really realizes he was gone.
* Ace's ADayInTheLimelight episode of ''WesternAnimation/BatmanBeyond'', where he goes after the guy who used him in dogfights, leaving Terry torn between tracking him down, and investigating the dogfighter himself.
* ''HeyArnold'' episode "Abner come home".
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