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WORST BREAKUP EVER
Years of a healthy
early old age, followed by
a short ill old age.
• In May 2005, a stray dog apparently rescued an abandoned newborn girl in Nairobi, Kenya. The girl was taken to the Kenyatta National Hospital and named Angel, and many people expressed an interest in adopting her. The stray dog was also given a name: Mkombozi, which means Savior. Mary Adhiambo, who lives in the compound where the dog lives, said that the dog apparently found the newborn girl in the nearby Ngong Forest. Stephen Thoya said, “I saw a dog carrying a baby wrapped in a black dirty cloth as it crossed the road. I was shocked at first, and when I tried to get a closer look, the dog ran through the fence and disappeared along a dirt road.” Two children told adults that they had heard the crying of a baby, and the newborn girl was found in a shed where the puppies of two stray dogs were living. Government spokesman Alfred Mutua said, “This is a very interesting development and the government is looking into it because if it happened the way it has been relayed, it is one of those amazing things that happens in life that defies human explanation. It indicates that there is somebody out there watching over us.” Mkombozi was being cared for after her rescue of the child. Jean Gilchrist of the Kenya Society for the Protection and Care of Animals said that Mkombozi was given a bath and a deworming and was being treated for ticks. Felix Omondi, age 11, and his family, who live in the compound, adopted the dog. Ms. Gilchrist said about Mkombozi and the newborn, “She reckoned it was a young animal and possibly wanted to bring it up. It is something to do with the canine-human bond. Other dogs might have just left her there to die.” Ms. Gilchrist added, “She’s obviously a very special dog. She is a very street-wise dog, that is for sure. The other dogs in the compound did not look very well, but she is the fattest of them all—she obviously knows how to look after herself.”
• On August 1, 2009, Ronnie, a wire fox terrier, responded when a coyote threatened his owners (Eric and Janis Christensen) and another pet dog (Annie). He jumped between the coyote and his owners, and he fought the coyote. Although the coyote bit Ronnie, the coyote ended up running away. Usually, Ronnie is not all that courageous. According to owner Janis Christensen, “Ronnie has always been extremely timid. Yesterday we had a repair person in our house, and Annie was barking and growling and trying to get at him, and Ronald put his tail between his legs and ran.” Because of Ronnie’s brave action, the Los Angeles branch of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals named him Hero Dog of the Year. According to SPCA-LA President Madeline Bernstein, “Ronnie’s personality was such that you wouldn’t think he would spring into action like he did. This shows that treating your pet with love and respect can be returned by an amazing heroic act. Coyotes wandering into backyards looking for food [are] becoming more and more prevalent.” Ronnie received a commemorative plaque and won a year’s supply of California Natural brand pet food, and Ronnie and his owners received a weekend getaway at Hotel Maya in Long Beach, California.
• Toddler Tyler Jacobson, who was only 22 months old, wandered off from his home and spent the night in the deep woods of South Carolina as the temperature dropped into the 40s. Tyler was wearing only a T-shirt and a diaper, but one of the family’s pet dogs, a medium-sized black Labrador retriever mix, went with him and kept him warm enough to stay alive during the night. Rescuers tried to find him that night, but failed, despite using both an infrared-equipped search helicopter and a bloodhound tracking team. Kershaw County Sheriff Jim Matthews said, “I believe that dog being with him is what kept him alive. I was with one of my officers talking to the helicopter crew when we got the call, ‘They found him.’ And I was like, ‘Is he alive?’ We worried there was no way, because of the coldness and because he had been out there all night.When they said, ‘He’s fine,’ I’m thinking, Wow. How did that happen? And the answer is because of that dog.” In the morning, Tyler was heard crying and was rescued about a quarter-mile from his home.
• In 2009, Julie Hill posted an essay titled “Faithful Dogs” on <dogcastradio.com>. A person who called him- or herself “Anonymous” posted this comment on the essay on 11 January 2009: “I was walking on a clear sunny day in Scarborough, Ontario, passing a house. Down the driveway ran a little boy, not more than 18 months old barechested, sporting a diaper only. Happy as Larry, he flew to the end of the road. I ran towards him. I was not seeing any adult about to grab at him before he ran into the oncoming traffic. Another runner, faster than myself got to him first, digging his heels in and gripping the back of the diaper so hard it split. The boy stopped to see who was inhibiting his run to freedom and when he turned he saw a German Shepherd, bigger than himself, holding fast. I watched, fascinated, as the little boy turned around and walked quietly back up the driveway—still no adult in sight—his arm around the dog’s neck.”
• In September 2004, a man identified only as Aurel C, from Focsani, Romania, suffered a heart attack and fell before he could reach a telephone. Fortunately, Max, his nine-year-old German Shepherd, saved his life. Aurel C said, “I was getting ready to go to bed when I felt an awful claw in my chest and fell on the floor. I tried to get the phone in the other room but had no power to move. With my last strength I told the dog ‘fetch the phone, Max’ and like in a dream I saw him snatching the phone from the wall and bringing it under my nose. I called the ambulance and woke up at the hospital. I can’t wait to go back home to my Max.”
Copyright by Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved