Louisiana Tech University’s beloved mascot is missing

The Ruston, La., area is desperately searching for Louisiana Tech University mascot Tech XX after the 4-year-old English Bulldog went outside for a potty break Sunday evening and disappeared from the animal clinic where he was staying.

Tech XX made his debut as the Louisiana Tech mascot in January 2008 at a basketball game against Nevada.

“We let him go outside in the parking area to do his business, and he was gone five minutes later,” Sexton Animal Health Center owner Dr. Patrick Sexton told The News Star after Tech XX went missing.

Sexton is also Tech XX’s primary caretaker, and he explains that, though the Bulldog enjoys attending a sports event every once in awhile, Tech XX does not do well in the outdoors.

“He would much rather be in the air conditioning than roaming outside,” Sexton said of Tech XX. Concerned for his dog’s safety, Sexton just hopes that Tech XX will be found soon.

“It’s so hot and to not know whether he was taken or is lost or something else completely is scary,” Sexton said. “I just want to know he’s OK.”

The Louisiana Tech community has rallied together to find the missing pooch, posting flyers and taking to social networking sites in an effort to locate Tech XX; the hashtag #FindTechXX has been popping up on Twitter since Monday.

“We’re trying everything we can to get the word out,” Louisiana Tech University Student Government Association President Will Dearmon explained to USA Today. “As many people as we can get to search for him and bring him home safely, the better.”

The reward for the beloved Bulldog’s safe return began at $1,000, which Sexton offered up from his own pocket. Tuesday night that amount jumped up to $2,000 when a university alum heard the Louisiana Tech mascot was missing in action.

Tech XX was named the official mascot of Louisiana Tech University in early 2008 when the English Bulldog was only a 3-month-old pup. Since then, Tech XX has come to represent the spirit of the university.

“He’s not just a regular Bulldog,” Dearmon said of Tech XX. “He embodies the legacy of the Bulldog, the history of the university…he’s an emblem of everything great about Tech.”

“He’s everyone’s dog and we have to get him back,” Dearmon added.

Sexton explains that his house isn’t a home without Tech XX. To him, the Bulldog is more than just a mascot — he’s a part of the family. “There’s a void without him around,” Sexton said.

Anyone with information about Tech XX’s whereabouts is asked to call the Sexton Animal Health Clinic at (318) 251-8283.

Sources: USAToday.com, TheNewsStar.com, KTBS.com