A blind dog that wandered away from her family’s Boulder Creek, California home and into the nearby forest area of the Santa Cruz mountains has been rescued. The blind Labrador retriever named Sage wandered away on February 24 after her owner, Beth Cole, thought the dog had been brought into their house that night.
According to the Santa Cruz Sentinel, the 12-year-old Lab wandered into the forest. When the family realized Sage was missing, neighbors and friends searched day and night, and not only were they worried about the dog surviving the cold temperatures, but mountain lion attacks had been reported more than usual in the immediate area.
And then on the eighth day of the dog’s disappearance, neighbor Dan Estrada and his friend Victor Lopez had been hiking behind their home when they spotted what they thought was a garbage bag in the water. It wasn’t until the men got closer did they realize it was Sage lying lifeless in the stream with her chin barely out of the water. As Estrada carefully lifted her up, Sage picked up her head noticing Estrada’s dogs, but was too weak to walk on her own.
Estrada stated he was overcome with emotion at that moment:
“When we saw she was alive, I jumped in the stream and hugged her. Man, it was really emotional. It had been dry that week and the new rain was moving in,” said Estrada. “When we found her she didn’t have the energy to lift herself out. That stream bed would have been flowing during a rainstorm. My wife and kids were waiting for us at the top. Everyone was crying.”
Estrada carried Sage out of the woods – the blind dog is responding well and is expected to make a full recovery.
Estrada turned down the reward offered by the family and asked that the $1,000 be donated to the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter. Sage is doing well, and her family is very grateful for all the help and support. What a lucky dog you are Sage!
There still are a lot of great people in this world helping those who can not speak for themselves. Dan and Victor – you are awesome heroes!
(Photos pf blind dog Sage courtesy of Dan Estrada)
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