A Yorkshire terrier picked up as a stray in Iowa is heading back to the Louisiana home he was stolen from three years ago.

A city of Cedar Rapids news release says Sam was found April 14. The straggly pooch had a microchip implant, and city animal control officers were able to contact Sam's owners in the New Orleans suburb of Bridge City.

The dog was a gift to a 5-year-old girl about 10 years ago and was taken from the family's yard three years ago.

Sam was given some veterinary care in Cedar Rapids, and the city says United Airlines provided transportation for a Cedar Rapids animal control worker who's escorting Sam. Their flight is expected to land in New Orleans late Wednesday morning.