I don’t care what I have to pay to get her back. She’s ir­re­place­able.

The Riverine Herald - - FRONT PAGE - By Char­mayne Al­li­son

A LIT­TLE girl from Echuca is des­per­ately search­ing for Rain­bow Dog.

He might just be a soft toy but he is also her best friend — and he’s been miss­ing for al­most a month.

Twelve-year-old Bindhi Ste­wart, who has autism, was given the colour­ful toy when she was just two. They have been in­sep­a­ra­ble ever since. Now Bindhi’s mum Misty is of­fer­ing a re­ward for any­one who can bring the pre­cious pooch safely home.

‘‘Some kids have blan­kets for com­fort, but Bindhi’s al­ways loved an­i­mals — and for her, it’s al­ways been about Rain­bow Dog,’’ she said.

‘‘It’s not a toy to her, it’s her best friend, she sleeps with her, takes her every­where.

‘‘Her dad passed away three years ago and Rain­bow went with her to the fu­neral. They’ve shared ev­ery mo­ment to­gether.’’

Misty said it was un­usual for Bindhi to leave Rain­bow Dog any­where — but she sus­pects the toy may have been lost at Squig­gles Play­house in Moama or Grav­ity Shack in Echuca, where Bindhi at­tended par­ties a month ago.

“I’m hop­ing an­other child saw Rain­bow and liked her, so there’s a chance the toy can still come back to us,” Misty said. “Bindhi’s con­stantly ask­ing where Rain­bow is. “It’s hard to see her this way. I keep telling her I’m still look­ing.

“And sadly the woman who cro­cheted it has since passed away. Not that we could re­place Rain­bow, Bindhi would know the dif­fer­ence.”

She urged any­one who had seen Rain­bow Dog to get in touch with her on Face­book (un­der Misty Ste­wart). “I don’t care what I have to pay to get her back,” she said. “She’s ir­re­place­able.”

LIT­TLE FRIEND LOST: Bindhi Ste­wart with her Rain­bow Dog, her miss­ing pet and best friend.

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