Last Thursday, Oct. 6, 2015, Jeter and Wolf escaped their backyard in Rand Junction, Colo.. They wandered off for miles until both pets were hit by a train and left injured, but thanks to the train conductor who reported the accident, social media, and a community of animal lovers, the dogs were rescued, saved and reunited with their owners.
The Nickerson family owns the pets and didn’t realized their dogs had left their yard until they came out to feed them and didn’t find them. They searched the area but came up empty handed. Hopeless, they family thought they would never find and reunite with their pets.
The train conductor reported the incident and the dogs were found by the railroad tracks on 32 ½ Road. The dogs were taken to Grand View Animal Hospital where veterinarians worked to save their lives.
“[Jeter] was hit in the back end and [Wolf] was hit in the front end,” veterinarian Dr. TerLouw told NBC 11 News. “Jeter cannot use his hind legs and Wolf has severe trauma to the face and lost an eye. It tore out a couple of teeth and the tongue was bit and lacerated.”
Thanks to the Facebook pages ‘Mesa County Lost and Found Pets’ and ‘Lost and Found Pets of Mesa County & Western Colorado’ the Nickersons were reunited with their pets. Photos of the dogs were shared on the social network and a connection was made.
That same community that brought together Jeter, Wolf and the Nickersons, also helped pay for the surgeries that saved the dogs’ lives. Medical expenses totaled over $3,000. The online community raised $2,050 and an anonymous donor matched that quantity. All donations were made over the phone, directly to the vet hospital.
“It just makes me cry to think of how many people want to reach out and help somebody else’s dog,” said April Nickerson. “That’s awesome. I want to pay it forward. When it comes a time I can help I want to do it too.”
Jeter will need one of his legs amputated and Wolf will have to learn how to eat and drink again after his tongue is reconstructed, but the Nickersons are happy to have their dogs alive and back in their lives.