mo an elderly chesapeake bay retriever

BOISE, Idaho -It was the details that made the Cameron family know it was Mo.

Their dog had disappeared in the Oregon wilderness during a hunting trip in September. The 14-year-old Chesapeake retriever, a former hunting dog, still joined the family, although he stays in the camper. However, somehow she got out and went in search of the Camerons.

Mo came into the care of animal rescuer Cheri Glankler in late June. The elderly retriever was covered in fleas and ticks and had lost about half her body weight.

Glankler had a feeling she knew the dog though. The Camerons had blanketed the area with fliers after Mo ran off. People in the community helped, searching for her on horseback.

Glankler got a call about a brown dog that had passed out from exhaustion at a nearby ranch. She brought her home, bathed her and fed her nearly every two hours.

Mo had survived one of the area most chilling snow falls in nearly a century in some of the land’s most treacherous territory. No easy task for a young dog, let alone an older, deaf one.

“She’s a legend, she really is,” said Glankler, who has rescued dogs for 15 years.

It took some persuasion for the Camerons to visit Glankler. They had a few false alarms over the previous nine months, so they were somewhat skeptical the dog was Mo.

It was a tearful reunion.

The way the dog handled being bathed, the way she slept on Glankler’s foot and how she snuggled so deeply into Cindy Cameron’s stomach when they reunited reassured everyone it was Mo.

The way the dog navigated the garage and house when the Cameron’s got her home, was further encouragement.

“They didn’t give up,” Glankler said. “(Mo) didn’t give up on them and they didn’t give up on her.”

In honor of Mo’s epic story, Glankler plans to start a new rescue group, named “Legends of the Paws.”

Source: Associated Press