'Faint Yelps' From Rubble Lead to Happy Ending in Morocco

CBS engineer to adopt one of 2 dogs found alive in debris this week
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 15, 2023 12:12 PM CDT

The loss of life in Morocco following last week's 6.8 magnitude earthquake is hard to grasp. Luckily, signs of life have emerged from the rubble as well. The UK's Kent Fire and Rescue Service reported Wednesday that members had rescued a dog trapped among debris in the High Atlas Mountains, near the epicenter of the quake, per the BBC. "They spotted movement and moved debris to pull the dog to safety," according to a post on X, accompanied by a video showing a firefighter offering water to the brown and white animal, who laps it up. More happy news came Friday. A CBS News crew was reporting from the town of Talat N'Yaqoob, also in the High Atlas Mountains, when "we heard faint yelps coming from a pile of debris," writes reporter Chris Livesay.

It was coming from a tiny brown puppy "about the size of a hamster" and "so young its eyes were still sealed shut," Livesay writes. The male puppy was exposed to the sun "with his mouth full of dirt, groping for his lost mother." Neither the mother nor any other pups were found. According to Livesay, the crew not only found milk for the dog but also a new home. CBS News engineer Steve Argyll, who is managing communications for the crew, offered to adopt him. As Argyll notes, "my partner and I have been wanting a dog for a while." The pup was whisked to a veterinarian in Marrakech, who found he was likely born a few days before the earthquake struck. Despite the condition in which he was found, the dog is "in perfect health," CBS reports.

The vet will hold onto the puppy and ensure he's fed every three hours while Argyll travels home to London and arranges the paperwork that will allow him to bring the dog home. He already has a name picked out. "I think I'll name him Popty. It's short for the Welsh word for microwave," he says, noting it's a name he and his partner already had already picked out. In less happy news, the death toll from the devastating quake rose Tuesday to 2,901, with more than 5,530 injured, per Reuters. Jamie Muddle, the firefighter who offered water to the older dog found, describes "really devastating" scenes, per the BBC. "We've seen villages that are completely destroyed," adds Dom Moore, also of Kent Fire and Rescue. (More uplifting news stories.)

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