If you’ve ever owned or met a rescue dog, you know canines can be incredibly resilient. Even animals who are terribly mistreated often go on to become devoted human companions for life.
St. Bernards, in particular, are true to their virtuous name. The American Kennel Club actually refers to these jumbo-sized pups as “genial giants.”
On the AKC website, the organization also cites the breed’s written standard. Sure enough, words like “muscular” and “very powerful” are used to describe the average St. Bernard.
But one senior St. Bernard affectionately named Old Lady goes straight beyond “average” into the realm of “extraordinary.” According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, this 10-year-old pooch spent much of her life at a puppy mill in Wisconsin.
It was certainly a brutal and challenging experience. But clearly, it fortified Old Lady with a level of plucky tenacity that has made her an internet sensation.
The Star Tribune reports that Old Lady recently spent a grueling 17 days alone during a particularly bone-chilling Minnesota winter.
Evidently, the intrepid pooch managed to run away from her foster family in early January. She then became lost in the frigid woods near Zimmerman, Minnesota.
While Old Lady was missing, local officials with Princeton-based Ruff Start Rescue issued frantic appeals and alerts on Facebook. “We have had search parties, signs, phone calls, and so many people out looking for this poor girl,” one of their posts read.
The community certainly came together, posting flyers all over town. “Do NOT yell, approach or chase,” one poster instructed, hoping to avoid scares and startles that might further complicate the situation.
Then one day, a grandfather and his grandsons out trekking through the woods spotted a very lean brown-and-white dog. They alerted Ruff Start Rescue immediately, and it turned out to be Old Lady.
Miraculously, the courageous canine was still somehow clinging to life. The Star-Tribune reports that evidently, her leash had become tangled in the tree-dense terrain.
Ruff Start Rescue said that Old Lady was initially in pretty “rough shape.” She was frostbitten, shivering and utterly emaciated after such a lengthy outside ordeal.
Old Lady was quickly transported back to the rescue and showered with tender loving care. “It’s a miracle! She’s safe and back in the care of RSR,” a celebratory update announced.
This determined senior’s story got an even happier ending. All that media coverage brought Old Lady to the attention of a kindhearted woman who decided to make her a permanent part of the family.
As Ruff Start Rescue explained on social media, this new owner will “foster to adopt” until Old Lady fully regains her health and vigor. “It was love at first sight for both of them,” the Facebook post said.
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