Even good dogs stray away from their homes. No matter how well trained, or well behaved, dogs can be lured away from their yards for a variety of reasons.
Such was the case when Osi, a 9-year old black lab, wandered out her front door and got quickly got lost.
A Failed Rescue Attempt
Shortly after Osi went missing, a truck driver on a highway near her home reported that he saw the dog, called her over, but before she reached the truck, she was struck by another car.
Isi’s family, the Sweeneys, were notified by a neighbor on a Wednesday evening that their dog had gotten out and was struck by a car.
Searched The Woods For Hours
The family joined more than 20 neighbors in a search of the neighborhood woods. The local fire department even lit up the area with floodlights and used a thermal imaging camera to look for Osi.
She was not found.
Despite being alone with her children while her husband, former Congressman John Sweeney was away on business, she continued to search for Osi.
Osi was named after former New York Giants defensive lineman Osi Umenyiora, and was described as being extremely protective of the family’s children.
Even Bacon Didn’t Work
Sweeney tried cooking bacon and walked through the woods calling for Osi, hoping the smell of her favorite food would help her find her way home.
After a few days with no luck, Mrs. Sweeney hired a dog tracker. The tracker followed her trail to about seven miles from the family’s home. But, when Sweeney searched the area, she found nothing.
Flyers And A Rescue Party
The family put up flyers and spread the word throughout the community and the neighboring towns. A week after her disappearance, a group of about 30 searchers gathered to look for Osi.
After an unsuccessful search, a miracle call came through.
Osi Found, Severely Injured
Despite feeling hopeless, Sweeney preserved. Then, she got a call that Osi had been spotted one street over and a few houses away. Sweeney jumped in a friend’s truck and sped to reunite with her long lost pup.
When they found Osi, the dog was dehydrated. He’d also suffered a broken bone in his hind leg.
“I think he was very thankful he was found. He was quiet. He was patient,” Sweeney said.
Though they had searched that area many times, there was no initial sign of Osi. The dog, injured and tried, stayed quiet. Lost and injured dogs often behave differently than they would while at home. These are survival instincts that kick in when under stress.
Luckily, after 8 days, Osi felt well enough to bark when a firefighter walked by.
Amputation And Big Vet Bills
Osi was lucky to be found alive. She was alone and injured, laying in freezing temperatures in the woods.
Her leg injury was bad enough that the leg had to be amputated.
The vet bills were over $10,000. The family started a GoFundMe campaign to help pay for the dog’s vet care.
Two Ways To Avoid Disaster
Osi’s case demonstrates two things:
One, all dogs should have a GPS dog collar. When your dog gets lost, a GPS collar helps you know exactly where they are. Instead of losing a week, or more, searching in the wrong direction, you’ll know your dog’s location instantly. Click Here to learn how a GPS collar helps save your dog’s life.
Two, pet health insurance is invaluable in an emergency situation. Fixing broken legs and helping heal dehydration are costly. If your dog survives getting lost, chances are they will need medical attention. Because emergency vets can be costly, insurance helps dog owners afford vet care so their dogs get the treatment they need. Click here to learn how pet health insurance can help save your dog’s life.