We all know that dogs always have their eye on the adventure, but Nanuq, the Australian Shepard, has taken on the challenge of a lifetime trekking for 241 km (150 miles) in an effort to return to his beloved home.
An incredible story of a one-year-old Australian Shepherd has surfaced in which the family dog had gone missing and returned home a month later – but this is no simple story.
Nanuq, meaning Polar Bear in Siberian Yupik, was on vacation with his family in Savoogna, Alaska, when he and a fellow furry friend Starlight disappeared.
While the other dog, Starlight, returned just a few weeks later, Nanuq was nowhere to be found, and the family, residents of Gambell, Alaska, thought the worst had happened. That was until great news came flooding in a few weeks later.
Family dog treks treacherous Alaskan sea ice to return home – Nanuqs journey
While the details of Nanuqs incredible journey will remain unknown, his owners have stated that he is an intelligent dog well used to surviving on their native foods.
Nanuq, who went missing from Savoogna, Alaska, mysteriously appeared in Wales, Alaska, which is 241 km (150 miles) northeast of Savoogna, almost a month later.
Locals in Wales began posting photos of the lost Australian Shepard, hoping to find his owners, but little did they know what journey this dog had been on.
When word spread, Nanuqs family recognised their beloved family dog, who was described as lost, and his owner couldn’t believe what she saw. “I was like, ‘No freaking way! That’s our dog! What is he doing in Wales?’” she said.
Family dog causes a stir in Alaska – Nanuq returns home to Gambell
When it became apparent to Nanuqs family and those that had found him that the clever dog had trekked 241 km (150 miles) to make his way home, they couldn’t help but wonder how he made it.
“I have no idea why he ended up in Wales. Maybe the ice shifted while he was hunting,” Ms Iworrigan said. But, she added, “I’m pretty sure he ate leftovers of seal or caught a seal. Probably birds, too. He eats our native foods. He’s smart”.
In an effort to get him back to his hometown of Gambell, his owner used air miles to fly him back with a charter that was already taking a group of athletes to a tournament.
Bringing Nanuq home – in near-perfect health after a treacherous journey
The incredible thing is that Nanuq was in near-perfect health after his long journey across the Alaskan ice, apart from a bite from an unknown animal and a swollen leg, which will forever remain a mystery to all involved.
Nanuq has instilled a sense of wonderment in all of us, knowing that a family dog can be capable of such a fascinating journey home.
Luckily for Nanuq, the reunion ended happily, and stories of his Alaskan sea ice odyssey will be a part of his future legacy. For more dog heroism, check out our article on the mountain rescue dog who saved a stranded couple in the UK.