Avalanche Dog Turns Up Alive

Welsh corgi appears at hotel 4 days after owner is killed
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 6, 2012 1:17 AM CST
Avalanche Dog Turns Up Alive
Ole turned up at a Cooke City vacation spot four days after the dog and its owner were swept up in an avalanche. Ole's owner died.   (AP Photo/Natasha Baydakova)

Avalanches claimed the lives of three Montanans, but a feisty fighter they didn't get was the dog of one of the dead men. Rescuers were certain Ole, a Welsh corgi, was buried along with his owner last weekend. They saw no sign of the dog when they searched for victims. But Ole turned up hungry and exhausted four days later at the vacation lodge where his family had been staying. Owner Dave Gaillard was swept away in the avalanche near the southern border of Montana during a cross-country ski outing.

"His last words to me were, 'Head for the trees,''' his wife told the Billings Gazette. "I think he saw what was coming from above that I didn't see." His body was recovered the following day. Two snowmobilers also died in nearby avalanches. Gaillard's daughter was attaching photos of Ole on poster board as part of a memorial when the dog showed up. "We needed this," said a rescuer of Ole's survival. "It kind of cheered everyone up." (More Montana stories.)

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