Newly-adopted dog who went missing in gator-infested swamp found safe after rescue

Newly-adopted dog who went missing in gator-infested swamp found safe after rescue

It’s always a great moment when a rescue dog gets adopted, especially after a neglectful home life. It’s great to know that these pets will finally be in a good home, safe and sound.

But one adopted dog who was on his way to his new home ran into yet another scary situation: after a crash, the dog went missing near a Florida swamp, and after days his new family thought he could be prey for local alligators.

But after the community came together for a rescue, the dog has now been found safe.

Ashley Tirado, from New Jersey, was on a trip to Florida when she found a stray dog, who she immediately fell in love with.

“He CHOSE us,” Ashley wrote on Facebook. “He hopped right into our car. He cuddled with us all night until the shelters were open where we could drop him off.”

Facebook/Ashley Kim

But she knew the dog, who she named Theo, was meant to be hers, and she made arrangements to adopt the dog for good. She hired a transport company to bring the dog up to her home in New Jersey.

It seemed like Theo was finally heading towards a happy ending, after a lifetime of abuse and neglect.

“He has a rough past, and we found out from local rescues that his last owner had allowed her child to stab him in the eye with a stick, and then proceeded to dump him in a high abandonment area in Florida,” Ashley wrote.

But Theo’s troubles weren’t over yet. On April 20, Theo was on his way north to his new home when the van flipped off the side of the road.

Theo, who was still recovering from an eye wound and a neutering, ran off on his own, and was nowhere to be found for days.

Most troublingly, he was lost in the Florida swampland, and Ashley became concerned that her new dog might end up a snack for a wild alligator.

Facebook/Ashley Kim

With no time to lose, she shared the story on Facebook, encouraging people to spread the word and help look for the missing dog.

But soon, the community came through to help in a big way. Ashley says that three Florida rescues and other volunteers began a rescue mission, braving the swampy terrain and a long commute to look for Theo.

“These women trudged through swamps, climbed up and down ravines, stared alligators down in the middle of the night while lugging meat around, and even learned how to fight off a giant python in the event of an attack,” a grateful Ashley wrote on Facebook.

But their hard work paid off: after 9 days missing, Theo was found, safe and sound!

Facebook/Ashley Kim

Finally safe from the dangerous situation, Theo can at last go to his new home.

Ashley was thrilled, and thanked everyone who helped find Theo.

“Without these women, our Teddy Bear wouldn’t be coming home,” she wrote on Facebook. “He could very well be dead.”

“He is SO SO lucky to have this team of amazing women who did what they did.”

Facebook/Ashley Kim

We’re so glad this beautiful dog is finally going home after being found safe and sound. Thank you to everyone who helped find Theo!

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