A runaway dog was reunited with his family this weekend after surviving in the snowy woods for two weeks and becoming a social media sensation.

 Ohly, a two-and-a-half year-old Bernese Mountain Dog, escaped in the woods around Vancouver's Mt. Seymour last month while on a walk with a friend of his owners. “He bolted down the road,” owner Steve Goad told “Our friend chased him for a couple of hours trying to catch up with him and find him, but the dog just went into the woods.”

The family wasn’t sure they’d find their pet but after a week people began to report spotting him in the woods. They then ramped up rescue efforts, even enlisting a blood hound to see if he could trace their dog’s scent, but to no avail.

Even when Goad finally caught sight of Ohly near the bottom of the mountain, after the dog had been missing for 10 days, he couldn't convince him to come home.

“He was so panicked, even my voice didn’t do anything,” Goad said. “We followed him and he ran away from us until he got to a point called 'Suicide Gully' which he went over, and we couldn’t get into.”

The family recruited the help of local search-and-rescue team North Shore Rescue, which sent a helicopter to confirm that Ohly was still in the area and dispatched a party to retrieve him. Though they spent over a day trying to entice him with food by frying bacon and got within five feet of him, rescuers still couldn't get ahold of the dog.

Meanwhile, the story of the search for Ohly had picked up steam on social media as word spread about the missing dog on a Facebook page created by the Goads. Animal lovers and those in the community flooded to the aid of the family, sending donations and offering their help in the search.

Ultimately the North Shore Rescue team decided the intense interest in finding Ohly was turning into a public safety hazard and worried that people were putting themselves at risk trying to find the dog, so they decided to send in another helicopter in a stealth operation team leader Tim Jones likened to 'getting Bin Laden.'

"The dog had gone wild. It had gone feral," Jones told, explaining that the area where Ohly escaped to was extremely treacherous. "It's called 'Suicide Gully' for a reason. It's heinous terrain and it's not terrain where you go in unprepared...It was the perfect storm of somebody getting killed trying to rescue this dog."

Jones helicoptered in a team that was finally able to corner Ohly and get him back, a moment Goad describes as "elation." The family was also overwhelmed by the support they received: over $10,000 in donations flowed into North Shore Rescue, which covered the cost of the helicopter and started a fund for future dog rescues.

"That complete strangers were willing to give up weeks of their time to help us out, it was incredible,” Goad said. The family is now returning the favor by helping to promote and support search efforts for another missing dog in the region named Ellie Mae.

As for Ohly, he's been back at home since Saturday and is doing well, though he was dehydrated and had lost roughly 25 pounds -- a quarter of his body weight -- when he was rescued.

“He’s doing well. He’s in good shape,” Goad said. “It’s just a wonderful feeling to have him back in the house and we’re going to keep him on a very short leash from now on!”

VIDEO North Shore Rescue Search Rescue of Ohly the Dog Suicide Gully

Responses to "Dog lost in the snow for two weeks is found after search (Video)"

  1. Anonymous says:

    Can dogs get snow blind?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Is there a link for Ellie Mae?

  3. Oh Thank you for sharing this.

  4. Anonymous says:

    People need to listen to animals... he is not a stupid animal or being unobedient. He is dog who needed to be alone to make his own experience... even the death was not a thing to fear for him. Now he needs to live his life on a "very short leash". How tragic.

  5. This story was really nice. I love animals more than anything and it always makes me happy to read a story with a happy ending that didn't involve any animal cruelty. The rescuers and the helicopter were the key, and they are heroes for what they did!!

  6. Anonymous says:

    north shore search and rescue were criticised for rescuing Ohly, I guess by people who think he was on a dog "walk about" and should be left to have his own experiance, even if he dies, but their are us dog owners who understand how important dogs are in our lives, They truly are the only creature who love us more than they love themselves. As a long time member of a sar team we rescued numerous dogs, wether from a bluff or from a crevise, and sometimes in the middle of the night, and there was never a hesitation from members to go out and rescue a "Dog". It was very special to return a four pawed family member back to his or her family and I never felt for a moment the stranded dog should be left to their own demise. North Shore SAR did the right thing, humanely and from a saftey aspect, you donn't want untrained people out in the bush looking for a lost dog, you may end up looking for lost and maybe injured persons. also i know sar members who spend 100's of hours training their dogs to rescue people who are lost in the woods or trapped in an avalanche, so maybe we just need to return the favour. Dogs serve us well in many aspects of our lives, as gaurd dogs, drug dogs, rescue dogs, bomb dogs in the wars, or just as faithful companions. They deserve our love and respect and they deserve to be rescued when they need us, and I commend North Shore SAR for the efforts they made to rscue Ohly. I have rescued dogs, many cats from trees, and half a dozen or so eagles and I have never regreted a moment of the time it took. As a human race it is our obligation to help those that cannot help themselves. Thank you for reading, Steve.

Write a comment