In midst of devasation, pooch rescuedA Superior couple’s trip to check on their cabin Wednesday led to tears, but not the bad kind.
By: Maria Lockwood, Superior Telegram
A Superior couple’s trip to check on their cabin Wednesday led to tears, but not the bad kind.
Barb and Steve Carey’s decision to check on their Barnes-area cabin kept another family from losing everything.
Following the massive wildfire that broke out in Douglas County Tuesday, the Careys decided to drive out Wednesday and check if the place was still standing. The building, and their whole neighborhood, was intact and about a mile from the fire line. They elected to drive back through the back roads to see the aftermath of the blaze.
“It was horrible; it was like we were on another planet,” said Barb Carey, a Superior, Water, Light and Power employee; they passed a number of burned structures. “My heart just aches for these people.”
In the Sand Lake area, the couple was driving slowly down the road with the window open when they saw a small dog in a burnt area of forest.
“I had to look twice at the dog,” Carey said. “I was not expecting it.”
The couple parked and approached the animal, which had its purple leash tangled on burnt stumps. At first, the dog appeared territorial, as if it were protecting something. Once Carey kicked a piece of debris off the leash, however, the animal’s tail started wagging. They freed the filthy, 15-pound terrier and brought it to their vehicle, where it sat on Carey’s lap with its head out the window.
“It was a cute little thing,” she said, and it appeared to be uninjured.
The Superior couple asked firefighters at a staging area at the intersection of Highway 27 and County Road A if they knew who the pup belonged to. Having no luck there, they started driving along the roads near where the dog had been found, stopping at every inhabited cabin and talking to other drivers. An hour after they found the dog, a man directed them to a burnt-down home with people outside it.
“They lost everything,” Carey said. But when her husband showed them the dog, the expression on their faces proved it was theirs.
The family members said they had put the animal on a leash to put it in the car when they were given the order to evacuate, and when they opened the car door the dog panicked, pulled free and ran off.
As the Careys were leaving, another vehicle came pulling up the driveway of the burnt home. A girl flew out of the vehicle and the dog went running to her.
“It was quite touching,” Carey said. “We all had tears in our eyes.”
It was, she said, a happy ending to a bad situation.