Very Good Pup Sniffs Out Someone Who Needs His Help
"When I saw him run for the trees I knew something was there."
Banjo has always had a great nose — a talent his dad has helped him develop since he was a young puppy. But the 9-month-old German wirehaired pointer had no idea that one day it would save a fellow dog’s life.
Last week, Banjo and his dad were cross-country skiing near their home in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, when the pup picked up an unusual scent on the trail.
“Banjo has a distinct tail whip and body movement when he’s around fresh animal scent, so when I saw him run for the trees I knew something was there,” Kerry, who asked that his last name not be used, told The Dodo. “I assumed it was going to be a porcupine, bird or rabbit.”
From Banjo’s uncertain reaction, Kerry could tell something unusual was hiding in the bush. He skied closer just as a furry, golden head popped out of the snow.
Kerry could see that the lost dog had dug a burrow in the snow where he had been sleeping for several days. “He was terrified and chilly,” Kerry said. “He allowed Banjo near him, but I couldn’t get very close.”
Unable to coax the dog out of his hiding place, Kerry called the local animal control, who were able to get in touch with the dog’s worried owners. “Only when I put his owner on speakerphone did he show signs of moving," Kerry said. "I was able to coax him out of the bush with some treats, but he still wouldn’t let me get that close.”
Kerry learned that the dog’s name was Louie and that he had disappeared days earlier at the nearby dog park. Then a blizzard swept through, blanketing the area with heavy snow and making it even harder to find him.
Louie’s mom was out with a search party when she got the call that her dog had been found. She sprinted through knee-deep snow for a half hour to reach him, and when the cold pup saw his mom again, all fear magically melted away.
Kerry couldn’t help but be touched by seeing the happy family reunited: “Banjo was stolen in August, so I held back some tears as I kinda know the feeling!” Kerry said. “There were lots of friends of Louie and some laughs and happy tears from his owner Julia — a waggy butt and a very excited and hungry Louie! It was very sweet.”
“They had some food for him back at the vehicle," he added. "And I handed some extra treats to Julia along with a beer to celebrate."
Now, Louie is safe at home, and thanks to Banjo, his family has something extra special to celebrate this holiday season.