Story By: Simon Glover, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: CEN
An Icelandic family unable to find their one year old border collie despite hearing her barking in the night were amazed to discover that she had been buried by an avalanche for six days before finally managing to dig herself out.
The dog, called Thota, had gone missing from a farm in the valley of Hnappadalur in western Iceland’s Snaefellsnes peninsula almost a week previously.
Her owner Sigrun Olafsdottir, who lives on the farm with her husband, admitted: “We had given up all hope.”
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But then one-year-old Thota came crawling home after six days, looking exhausted and thin, according to local media.
A fresh fall of snow meant the family were able to retrace her footsteps to discover where she had been.
They ended at a dog-sized hole in a huge pile of snow where a minor avalanche had fallen near a potato field.
Sigrun said it was clear that Thota had been buried by the snow but she had eventually managed to dig her way out.
She added Thota was lucky to have survived and had also been fortunate that she had dug the right way and not into the snow.
Sigrun said: “I suppose it’s a testimony to her strength and her will to live.”
Thota disappeared after failing to return from her morning run in the fields one day.
Her owners say they searched everywhere for her but could find no trace – although they thought they heard her barking at night.
Thota is now said to be recovering well despite her ordeal and eating plenty of big meals to get back to normal.