- (Photo : Reuters) Stray pup Czarue lauded as a hero after saving a young missing girl's life in Poland.
Reports confirm that a stray dog named Czarue who roams the streets of Pierzwin, Poland is now being hailed a hero after saving a young girl's life who went missing in the deep, cold forests near the town on Friday (March 1). Little three-year-old Julia wandered into freezing marshlands with the adorable pup late Friday, and as the sun (and temperatures) continued to drop the pair of "best friends" inevitably got lost. The young girl's grandmother promptly alerted authorities, and an avid search quickly commenced. Rescuers finally located Julia Saturday morning, who was discovered huddled up close to Czarue, frostbitten and crying for her mother. If not for the dog's warmth and comfort, young Julia most likely would not have survived.
After Julia's grandmother Danuta Balak realized that her granddaughter was missing, she alerted town authorities who quickly triggered a major search operation as the temperatures dropped below approximately 20 degrees. Police and fire-fighters claim that damp soil and marshes in the surrounding forests made the search especially difficult for the use of search dogs. A police helicopter was unable to find any trace of the girl on the ground.
After a long night of searching with no leads, rescuers finally stumbled across the young girl and the stray pup early Saturday (March 2). She was wet from lying on the cold, moist ground, but still alive thanks to Czarue's warming fur. The duo had wandered four miles from the grandmother's home.
Fireman Grzegorz Szymonowski said in a statement, "This dog is the most important part of this story, he is a hero. It is thanks to this dog that the girl survived the night. We ran around 500 meters, and there was silence. We stood to listen further and we heard the dog and later the crying of a child. We went in the direction and saw the child lying in the shrubs, she was wet because there was water in the forest."
According to the grandmother, young Julia and the stray pup had recently become the best of friends - "She was with this dog all the time. She didn't go anywhere without it," Balak said. "When she was with me, when I was looking after her, she constantly said, 'Granny, the dog needs to come in the house.' And she told me to cut bread and she fed it all the time."
Julia was promptly transported to a local hospital and was treated for minor symptoms of frostbite. Other than that, she's completely healthy - "The only unusual symptoms are swollen hands and feet, probably from the frost. A surgeon inspected this and prescribed ointments. The next few days will show if there is some deeper frostbite, or just surface changes," head of the pediatric ward in Zielona Gora hospital Kazimiera Barczyk said. "This dog which was with her most probably kept her warm. It lay down next to her when she fell asleep. She was walking and walking, and fell asleep when she got tired. The child was brought just before eight o'clock, at the beginning she was scared of people, and she was in shock. At the moment her mother is going through a lot of stress."
Little Czarue is now being hailed as a modern-day Lassie, and a protector of the smal Polish town.