FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) – Blind and alone in Alaska winter temperatures that dipped 40 degrees below zero, a lost 8-year-old Fairbanks dog wasn’t given much of a chance to make it home.
But after walking 10 miles to the edge of a local musher’s dog yard, Abby the brown-and-white mixed breed was found and returned to her owners, a family that includes two boys and one girl under the age of 10.
The dog that the family raised from an animal-shelter puppy went missing during a snowstorm on Dec. 13, and the family never expected to see her again, The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported (
“It’s a miracle, there’s no other words to describe it,” said McKenzie Grapengeter, emotion choking her voice and tears coming to her eyes. “We never expected to have her to be returned safe and alive.”
Musher and veterinarian Mark May said he came across the dog while running his team on Dec. 19, but didn’t stop to pick her up.
“It ran with us for about a mile on the way home before she fell off the pace, but I had a big dog team so I couldn’t grab it,” he said. “I said, `boy I hope it finds somebody’s house.'”
The next day, the dog turned up at May’s house.
“Everybody just assumed it was some kind of scaredy-cat, but there it was in front of the door in our dog lot and it was blind,” May said. “It was sitting there, all the way from 14 mile on the winter trail down into this neighborhood, I guess by just sniffing, so I picked it up and brought it in.”
To May’s surprise, the dog had no signs of frostbite.
“No frozen ears, no frozen toes, she’ll probably go back home and it’ll (be) business as usual. She’s no worse for wear but quite an adventure,” he said.
The Grapengeter family hadn’t tagged or put a microchip in the dog, but the community used social media to track down Abby’s owners.
“We’re so, so grateful for all (the community’s) hard work,” McKenzie Grapengeter said. “They’ve given us the most amazing Christmas gift we could ever ask for.”
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- The best places to celebrate Fall in Phoenix
- Infamous athletes who did the most time for their crimes
- 2016 baseball highlights, bloopers and blunders
- See how CFOs really feel about business in the Valley
- The best television shows on the internet
- A preseason guide to avoid holiday weight gain
- The 5 worst things you could do for your roof
- 6 coolest things brewing in Arizona
- The virus that keeps head and neck cancers on the rise
- State Fair ‘Kid Reporter’ has all the angles covered
- 4 important things to know about timeshare maintenance fees
- Signs of delayed car crash injuries
- The truth about sports concussions
- The Alzheimer's epidemic: Facts you need to know
- The season is here, keep your Fantasy Football team strong all season
- 8 TV shows you can't miss this fall
- Football is here: 6 tips to make this your best season ever
- Gameday recipes and beers to match
- 6 reasons the Cardinals are driven to win the Super Bowl
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier