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Dog Survives California Wildfires, Reunites with Her Family

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In the midst of the great losses surrounding the California wildfires, a 9-year-old Bernese Mountain Dog named Izzy is a beacon of hope.

According to the Associated Press, on Tuesday, October 10, Jack Weaver and his brother-in-law Patrick Widen went to his mother Katherine Weaver’s residence in Santa Rosa to try and find her beloved dog, Izzy.

Izzy’s owners had to flee their home in the middle of the night to escape the raging blaze that surrounded them, and tragically, a scared Izzy ran from them. Mrs. Weaver feared that if she chased after Izzy, she and the dog could both lose their lives, so she made the gut-wrenching decision to leave without her.

Weaver and Widen were convinced they would likely find the dog deceased when they went to try and find her days after his parents evacuated their now-ruined home, but something truly amazing happened instead.

As Weaver filmed the still-smoking area leading up to his mother’s home (he and Widen trekked three miles past police barricades to get to the property), Izzy came bounding towards them.

Widen’s wife posted the incredible clip on her Facebook page (which has garnered nearly 3.5 million views in a week), with the message, “My brother and husband were determined to try to get back to my parents property to see if by some miracle Izzy survived … This video shows the last part of their hike up to my parent’s house. It’s a little long, but the ending is worth the watch.”

She’s not kidding. As Widen and Weaver look at the destruction, they find something miraculous towards the end of the clip: Izzy. The men call for the dog, who comes towards them a little worse for the wear but still alive and well. Try not to get choked up as both men cry, “Oh my god!” when the realize they found their family’s dog.

Weaver told the AP, “She was very happy to see us. She’s such a brave dog. She was panting a lot and clearly stressed. But she was not frantic or anything.”

Izzy, who received a clean bill of health from a veterinarian (her thick coat likely helped with her survival, as it insulated the heat), was just what the family needed in such a dark time.

Weaver said that his mother “lost it” when she heard the news that her Izzy was still alive.

“She went from being devastated about losing her home to the being the happiest person I’ve ever seen. I couldn’t get home fast enough,” he told the AP, adding, “She’s still shaken up by the whole thing, but she’s in much better spirits now that Izzy is at our house.”

Image via Facebook


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Aly Semigran is a lifestyle writer for the world and roommate of Ruby, the cutest dog in the world.