Canine Castaway Makes It Home

April 10th, 2009 by Dan

I’m a huge fan of “Lost” and I know there is still quite a following for “Survivor” out there as well, but when it comes to stories of dogs having to fend for themselves, all the fun goes out of the fantasy. However, the case of one Australian Cattle Dog is right out of a plot of a TV show.

Australian Cattle Dogs are known for their exceptional intellect and drive. “Sophie Tucker”, a 4 year old member of this strong, independent breed, was owned by Jan Griffith and her family. Sophie lived in Australia and enjoyed cruising around on the family yacht. Four months ago, tragedy struck when the dog was washed overboard during a storm. The family conducted a search, but there was no sign of the dog. It seemed like the end of a sad story.

Sophie Tucker

What the Griffith family didn’t know is that Sophie managed to swim over 5 nautical miles (somehow avoiding sharks) to St Bees Island, a nature reserve off the coast of Queensland that is famous for its Koala population. The clever dog hunted and fed on young wild goats that inhabited the island. Though her physical condition suffered, she survived.

After a bit of time, rangers spotted what they believed to be a wild dog on the island. Upon closer examination they realized it was a very scared Cattle Dog. Word spread to the Griffith family who couldn’t believe what they were hearing. A trap was set and the family was there to greet Sophie when she reached land. The long-lost dog recognized her owners right away and gave them an enthusiastic greeting, “She wriggled around like a mad thing.” Thinking their pet had perished, they had gotten a new dog – a Red Heeler named Ruby.

Although she was showing some signs of trauma during her travel from the island to the mainland, Sophie is apparently settling back into her normal way of life. She and Ruby have become fast friends and she is back on to her normal diet – no more goats (or koalas!) for her!

Check out this news clip about Sophie Tucker’s amazing story!





One Response to “Canine Castaway Makes It Home”

  1. Cait Says:

    That is an amazing incident. I don’t think most dogs could do what Sophie did. I can’t even imagine how the family feels to have her back.

    Wonder if fictional Vincent will ever make it back to fictional Walt?

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