South Florida family looking for dog they lost while fleeing Irma

Photo: Coco

Running from imminent danger is a little less frightening with your loved ones in tow. However right now, a south Florida family that came to Northwest Florida to escape Hurricane Irma is now desperately trying to locate a missing member of their group - a little Maltese named Coco.

Coco's parents, Brayan and Mia Saravia, were only in town for one night. They heeded Governor Rick Scott's evacuation order; their party of five traveled from Hollywood, Florida to an Airbnb near Pensacola State College. The plan was to wake up, grab everything and head back home Thursday.

"I put the dog out on the patio. It was a hole in the fence at the house we were staying at, he apparently fit through the fence."

Although Coco, 2, is so small he could have ventured out of the fence himself, Brayan told Channel 3 News he believes his beloved pet was taken.

"He's pretty much like a baby. I don't think he escaped from the house. What I think is that somebody actually took him. Normally, he would be in front of the house, two hours in a row barking for someone to open the door," he explained.

Now, neighbors near the home on 9th Avenue and Kenny Drive where the family spent the night (near Underwood Avenue) are on high alert. They've taken to the internet, social media, and the streets to spread the word about the dog's disappearance.

"They can't bear to leave because the little dog is just like family," said Clara Brosnaham. She's just one concerned Pensacolian turned Good Samaritan who is helping contact media and hand out flyers for the family.

In fact, the family plans to stay until Sunday if they must before calling the search off and heading home, which thankfully, wasn't damaged by Irma.

"The good part is that their home was not totally destroyed or anything," Clara continued. Their apartment building, situated on a beach, survived the storm's wrath, Brayan said.

Brayan's concern grows each moment his Maltese is gone because Coco recently had surgery and needs his medication. His other concern is about his wife.

"My wife is very, very attached to him. She's crying like crazy, very nervous. She is afraid something bad is going to happen," Brayan said.

Coco is a white Maltese, weighs between 4 and 5 pounds and was wearing a little blue Hawaiian shirt. He normally has tags on, but didn't when he disappeared. He answers to Coco or Coquito.

Please call Brayan at (786) 303-4611 and/or email Mia at if you've seen or if you know where Coco is. There is a reward for his safe return.

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