As rescue crews searched frantically for a missing 3-year-old girl, officer Dan Berube and his police service dog Jynx knew the search was over when he heard a soft voice call out, “doggy”.
It was all hands on deck when a 3-year-old girl went missing in the woods of Nova Scotia, Canada. The girl’s family was terrified. And the cold, damp temperatures, along with the approaching dark, meant time was of the essence.
Part of the search team was Constable Dan Berube. He brought with him his faithful police service dog, Jynx, in the hopes the dog could track the missing 3-year-old girl’s scent. But everyone knew the odds were against them.
Credit: Craig Paisley/CBC
“You don’t really know where to start,” Dan explained. “It’s a needle in a haystack. Sometimes you’ll have certain indicators, footprints in snow if you’re lucky. In this case, we had no starting point.”
Finding the little girl before dark was going to take a miracle.
Dan’s training told him lost children will often travel downhill. But the mother of the missing 3-year-old girl said her daughter was a climber and would most likely have headed uphill.
So, Dan Berube decided to trust the mother’s instincts over the percentages.
“I went with mom’s gut. I have children of my own and I know my children best, and I figured mom knows her daughter best as well,” he said.
Fur-Angel Finds 3-Year-Old Missing Girl
As Dan, Jynx, and one other officer started heading uphill, Jynx started following a scent. The dog tugged Dan through all kinds of mud, twigs, and brambles. And at one point, Dan began doubting this path could possibly lead to the missing 3-year-old girl.
“In my mind, it was so thick and so hard to navigate through that I was ready to pretty much determine that no human would go through there,” Dan recalled.
But Jynx kept pulling hard, so Dan followed. And that’s when something amazing happened.
“I thrashed harder and my dog led me to where she was – and here she was in the middle of absolutely nowhere, a whole bunch of pine brush around her, and she was just standing there,” Dan said. “The first thing she said was, ‘Doggy.’ I just hugged her.”
Dan Berube wrapped his jacket around the missing 3-year-old girl and another officer carried her out of the woods, back to her worried parents.
“I can’t imagine one of my children not being home for dinner, not home at night,” Dan said. “I wasn’t going to let this one slide.”
This story could have ended so differently. Thank God for this police officer and fur-angel!
Featured Image: Getty Images/MilanMarkovic