Like most dogs whose homes are situated on large plots of land, one New Zealand dog regularly went off exploring through the farmland around his home for hours at a time.
But as Louie, a sheepdog rescued from a shelter when he was just a puppy, got older, his excursions got shorter and shorter. Now that Louie is 12 years old, he chooses to stay close to home and hardly ever goes out exploring anymore, which is why his family was so worried when he recently disappeared and didn’t return home.
“My mother was a little grumpy as she had thought he had stopped his wandering,” said Marolyn Diver, whose parents own Louise. “We worried he might forget where his home was.” But thankfully, Louie turned up at the house a few hours later. “He looked so exhausted and had basically just collapsed,” Marolyn said. “We were concerned someone might have hurt him. But then they realized there was a note attached to Louie’s collar. “After reading the note I felt complete and utter relief, then my heart melted.”
“Louie is the hero of the day,” read the note, which was written by a neighbor about a mile away. “He led me to Maddy in distress stuck under a branch pile. Cheers, Rob.” According to Rob, Louie was waiting for him at his house and demanded to be followed.
“Rob said he was 100 percent sure that Louie knew what he was doing, and getting Rob to Maddy was his one pure focus,” Marolyn explained. “Once he found her, Louie helped Rob dig her out, pulling at branches, digging out the ground. Rob said the second she was free both dogs ran to a nearby pond and jumped into it exhausted and drinking water. He then gave Louie a huge handful of dog biscuits as a thank you. He knew Louie might get in trouble for being late home, so he thought he would write a small note to explain his absence.”
“That night we were very worried about Louie. He could hardly walk and looked terrible,” Marolyn says. “We were scared that he might not make it through the night.” Thankfully, Louie was back to normal the next morning when Rob came by with Maddy for a visit. “It has changed the way I look at him. And I think my parents feel the same way. I’m so proud of him.”
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