Coronation Street director Sunderland Echo thanks readers for helping find his missing dog

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SOAP stars helped track down a Coronation Street director’s pet dog which went missing from Cleadon.

Duncan Foster, who also directs Emmerdale, was distraught after the cavalier King Charles spaniel vanished from outside his daughter’s home in Cleadon on Wednesday evening.

The director, who lives in County Durham, thought he saw a woman putting six-year-old Willow into a dark estate car.

He took to the streets of Sunderland and South Tyneside yesterday with Willow’s sister Missy to appeal for people’s help.

But Willow was found safe at an address in Pennywell, following an appeal through the Echo’s website and social media yesterday.

Soap actresses Michelle Keegan and Georgia May Foote joined calls for the safe return of Willow, who has a heart murmur and needs daily medication.

Overjoyed Duncan, who has directed Emmerdale and Coronation Street since 2001, was contacted shortly after a story about Willow’s disappearance appeared on the Echo’s website.

The 48-year-old, who lives near Stanley, said: “It is an immense sense of relief that she has been returned. It has been a traumatic 24 hours.

“I just want to say thank you to everyone who helped look for her. Without them I don’t think she would have been returned.”

Michelle, who played fiery barmaid Tina McIntyre in the long-running ITV soap, said: “I know how much Duncan loves his dogs. When you have a pet, it’s like part of the family.”

Georgia, who plays Katy Armstrong, is also a dog owner.

She said: “There is no one who loves that dog more than Duncan.”