Elderly, Blind Golden Retriever Returns Home After 3 Weeks Missing in Alaska Wilderness

·2 min read
missing blind golden retriever that has been found and returned
missing blind golden retriever that has been found and returned

chendongshan / Getty

If you're a fan of Naked and Afraid, you know how hard it is to survive in the Alaskan wilderness. But let us introduce you to an older, blind golden retriever who held her own in the wild for three weeks alone.

On June 18, the Kubacki family's beloved fur-baby, Lulu, went missing. "She means everything," her dad Ted Kubacki told the Associated Press. "I have five daughters, and they're 4 to 13 years old, so they've spent every day of their life with that dog."

The entirety of the Kubacki family searched for Lulu for weeks, but to not avail. Cruelly, someone even texted the family, telling them they'd found Lulu—only to then follow up with a "just kidding."

But on July 5, a construction crew spotted the golden retriever, who they initially mistook for a bear, in a salmonberry bush lining the road they were working on. Lulu was about 15 feet down an embankment off the side of the road, not too far from the Kubacki's home. Upon closer inspection, the construction workers realized they had found a dog who needed care.

Ted Kubacki told the AP that when he got word Lulu had been discovered, "I called my wife from work and it was just screaming. ... She just starts yelling, then she yells to the kids. And I just hear them screaming like crazy."

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But Lulu was in very bad shape after her mistaken romp into the woods. According to the AP, Lulu, normally an 80-pound dog, had dropped 23 pounds and was severely dehydrated, dirty, and had matted fur.

"I just expected to come back and be like, 'Hey, here's my dog.' She's going to jump up and wag her tail and kiss my face, and she couldn't even pick up her head," Kubacki told the AP. "She'd been through the wringer."

But after medical attention, R & R, and food, Lulu is on the mend.

"Slowly but surely she started eating and she was kind of able to pick her head up. But then yesterday, she propped herself up on her front paws by herself, like nestled into me and gave me a kiss and wagged her tail and it was just so great," Kubacki told the AP.

Kubacki told the AP he was worried about covering Lulu's vet bills, but people from their town of Sitka had donated hundreds to foot the bill.

"We have our family member home," Kubacki said.