(NEW YORK) — The story of one dog’s unbelievable survival after being trapped under rubble for more than three weeks may have you believing in miracles.
That’s precisely what rescuers thought when they encountered this tenacious one-year-old pup who was almost crushed under a collapsed building in the wake of Hurricane Dorian.
“The big miracle here was that he was pinned and still survived,” Big Dog Ranch Rescue CEO Christopher Kraus told “Good Morning America.”
Rescuers from Florida’s Big Dog Ranch Rescue found “Miracle” the dog in Abaco, one of the hardest hit areas in the Bahamas, after the Category 5 hurricane devastated the islands.
However, this wasn’t a standard search. The foundation turned to a drone with a high-resolution heat-seeking camera to help them spot dogs that were hidden under rubble or were coming out at night.
With the heat signature, the team was able to spot him under the rubble, but he wasn’t moving. When they pulled back the rubble, they learned why.
Miracle was trapped underneath an air conditioning unit that had fallen on him. He survived by drinking rainwater, but without food, Miracle was emaciated.
“He was very weak… He’d probably lost about half his body weight,” Kraus said.
There was another dog stuck under the rubble with Miracle, but unfortunately, he didn’t make it.
Kraus said that while giving Miracle his well-earned name was a “joint effort,” it was Big Dog Ranch Rescue’s founder and president Lauree Simmons who first started calling the dog the name they all were thinking.
“Lauree named him ‘Miracle’ not just because of the fact that he’s a miracle — that he lived for three and a half weeks on rainwater — but also as an inspiration to all the people at Abaco and Grand Bahama that are trying to rebuild their lives,” Kraus said.
But the road to recovery for both Miracle and the foundation’s rescue initiative is not over.
Miracle is “doing well,” but he isn’t walking yet. He’s undergoing treatment and therapy, as well as getting food and water. Kraus said that Miracle has begun putting on weight, and since coming in two days ago, he’s already gone from 22 to 26 pounds.
As for the foundation, Miracle is just one of 112 dogs that Kraus said they’ve rescued from the Bahamas so far, and they’ve already reunited 57 dogs with their owners who lost pets on Abaco and Grand Bahama. After Hurricane Maria, he also said that they saved thousands of dogs in Puerto Rico.
“The dogs know who rescue them,” Kraus said.
For those wondering if Miracle is looking for a home, Kraus said not to worry. If the rescue can’t find his original family, they’ve got offers coming from across the world, even from London and Australia — all from families touched by the tenacity and strength of this little, “Miracle” dog.
“We’ve had about 10,000 inquiries for a forever home … They keep pouring in,” Kraus said.
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