Just a little over a month ago, the historical mining town of Paradise, California suffered one of the worst wildfires in American history and the deadliest one in Californian history.
A wildfire with the innocent-sounding name of Camp Fire, named after the location of its initial birth.
The deadly wildfire was finally contained, but not without inflicting horrible casualties and utterly destroying Paradise.
Containment only means that the fire will not spread any further – it will be several more months before Camp Fire is completely extinguished.
As of present, however, progress has been made.
This means that the evacuation order has finally been lifted.
After more than a month, residents of Paradise can now start returning to their properties to find missing family members and friends – and in the case of Andrea Gaylord, her beloved dogs.
This promised to be a difficult task – Gaylord was forced to evacuate and leave her pets behind on November 8th, and it had been about 8 weeks since she last saw them.
Considering the blazing inferno that was Camp Fire had killed 88 people and about 19,000 buildings, chances of her dogs’ survival were slim.
Upon coming back to Paradise, Gaylord was greeted with a pleasant surprise – both her blond shepherd dogs had been found, safe and sound.
Miguel, a male Anatolian Shepherd, was easily tracked down by volunteer animal rescuers who had responded to Gaylord’s request.
As it turned out, he had been rescued in the aftermath and was safe and sound in a shelter about 85 miles away from her home.
The real miracle, however, was Gaylord’s other outdoor guard dog – Madison.
The dog had somehow survived the fire by himself, and had been guarding her property throughout the entire time.
He was quickly spotted by another volunteer animal rescuer Shayla Sullivan, who had also set out upon Gaylord’s request to find the dog brothers within the span of a few days.
It was a difficult task. In hopes of luring Madison back home, Sullivan had regularly left out food and water and had rubbed Miguel’s scent onto clothes and placed them around the site.
As it turned out, that was a great idea.
Madison showed up soon, apprehensive and insistent on keeping his distance.
Unable to approach the dog, Sullivan continued to leave out supplies for Madison until Gaylord could up in person a few days later, with Miguel in tow.
It was a joyous occasion, and Gaylord took the time to give Madison his favourite treat, which happened to be a box of Wheat Thin crackers.
Sullivan later wrote on Facebook that reuniting the brothers was an amazing experience.
The two dogs had greeted each other, then went straight back to work, guarding Gaylord’s property.
The animal rescuer imagines that Madison must find it a huge relief that his partner is back to help.
And in dark times such as these, where people are still desperately hoping their loved ones survived the aftermath of Camp Fire, stories like these are what keeps bringing us hope.