The Kubacki family lives in Sitka, Alaska with their sweet Golden Retriever Lulu. The dog has gotten up there in age, growing up alongside the kids in the family. Now a senior, Lulu has lost most of her sight.
On June 18th, 2022, Lulu wandered off and was suddenly gone. The family worried immensely about their senior pup, who was now forced to navigate their Alaskan hometown without really being able to see.
“She’s Just So Helpless”
The more time that passed since Lulu’s disappearance, the more concerned her family grew. Ted Kubacki, the family patriarch, expressed his worry to the Daily Sitka Sentinel:
“She’s just so helpless, and you kind of imagined that she can’t get real far because she can’t see.”
The five young girls in the family also felt heartbroken that their best friend was missing. They searched for weeks with no success.
“She means everything. I have five daughters and they’re 4 to 13 years old, so they’ve spent every day of their life with that dog,” Kubacki said.
Worn Down But Still A Survivor
Weeks later on July 5th, a construction crew working down the road from the Kubackis thought they saw a bear at the bottom of an embankment (something not unusual in this part of the country). But it was no bear.
“They got a closer look and they realized that it was a dog, and they got her out of there,” Kubacki said.
Lulu had somehow survived all this time, unable to see and without access to food or water. That’s one strong old lady!
“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,” Kubacki shared.
Poor Lulu was in bad shape when they found her, however. She had lost 23 pounds, her fur was dirty and matted, and she was severely dehydrated.
“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. She’d been through the wringer.”
Still, it’s incredible that she survived and that she was found. Thank goodness she hung in there until she could come back to her family.
“We have our family member home,” Kubacki said.
Alive And Grateful
With medical attention, nutrition, and rest, Lulu’s condition has slowly started to improve. She’s able to stand on her own now and show affection again.
“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.”
Knowing the turmoil they went through during her absence, residents of Sitka donated hundreds of dollars to the family to help cover Lulu’s medical bills. Having your dog go missing is a horrible experience, so it’s always heartwarming to see a lost dog return home safe and sound.
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