In the world of heartwarming animal stories, we often find tales of dogs escaping difficult situations and finding a new start. However, the story that we are going to tell you today in Mag is as extraordinary as it is unusual. It’s about a dog who, tired of life in a Michigan animal shelter, decided to go on his own search for a home and ended up finding a special place in a nursing home.
Scout, a middle-aged mixed-breed dog who had been living in an animal shelter for several years, is the protagonist of our story. Scout remained a homeless dog despite the efforts of shelter staff to find her a home. Scout seemed doomed to spend the rest of his life in a cage, until one day he decided to change his fate.
Scout managed to escape from the shelter. No one knows exactly how he did it, but what we do know is that his escape was not an accident. He jumped one high fence and then another, crossed a busy road in the dark, entered the automatic doors of a nursing home at the end of the street. The dog slipped into the lobby, jumped onto a sofa, curled up, and went to sleep peacefully.
VIRAL VIDEO | Scout on the couch where it all started. (Photo: Meadow Brook Medical Care Facility)
According to Detroit Free Press, an astonished nurse found him the next morning. He called County Antrim Animal Control, whose shelter is just down the road. And they found out that he had escaped from there the night before.
Scout was a stray dog. He had no identity, no history. Shelter staff gave her his new name, but otherwise knew nothing about him, though they noted that he had the distinctive behavior of an abused dog. Apparently someone shot him once, too, with ammunition or buckshot, because his chin still had some kind of round buckshot embedded in it. You couldn’t see them, but you could feel them if he let you touch him.
The sheriff came and took him back to the shelter. But a few nights later there was Scout, again on the same couch in the lobby of the nursing home. Somehow, he climbed back up a 10-foot chain-link fence, then a solid 6-foot privacy fence, crossed a road without getting hit, walked in the front door without being seen, jumped onto the same couch as before, and sat down. He felt at home for the rest of the night. He turned to make a call. They took him back to the shelter.
A couple of nights after that, Scout was back on the couch for the third time. And the staff had to make a choice.
The nursing home adopted Scout
Meadow Brook Medical Care Facility is a long-term care residence about an hour northeast of Traverse City. He cares primarily for the elderly, some of whom are terminally ill or demented, or simply have nowhere else to go or no one to care for them. There are 82 beds divided among several smaller households. For whatever reason, this is the place where the dog Scout decided to make his home.
“I’m a person who watches the outside signs, and if it’s got to be that way, it’s got to be that way,” said Marna Robertson, 57, a nursing home administrator. “She did it once, twice, three times and obviously it’s something you have to pay attention to. And I asked the staff, ‘Well, he wants to be here.’ Would anyone like a dog?’” she pointed to Detroit Free Press.
VIRAL VIDEO | Scout walks around the Michigan nursing home that adopted him. (Photo: Ryan Garza/Detroit Free Press)
The staff formally adopted it. Suddenly, the nursing home had its own pet. And the residents were delighted.
“I think it reminds them of being home,” said Rhonda Thomczak, 49, an administrative assistant at Glacier Hill, the home where Scout was first discovered. “When you are at home you have your pets, and here you cannot have them. Having a dog around makes you feel at home.”
Scout has free rein here at Glacier Hill, which is home to about 20 seniors. She roams the halls as she pleases, she lies where she pleases and visits the residents whenever she pleases. She learned to get into her room by jumping and using her paw to lower door handles. And she knows which residents keep dog treats in their walkers to feed them.
VIRAL VIDEO | Scout poses with donations for the animal shelter from which she ran away. (Photo: Meadow Brook Medical Care Facility)
Earlier this year, the nurses held a fundraiser in Scout’s honor. They posted the photo of him on social media and asked for donations to the animal shelter that took him off the street, and thus to themselves. Hundreds of dollars poured in from strangers who found out how he got there. Someone even came just to meet this dog they saw online. And in February he was named Resident of the Month. “Wow you!” said the sign announcing the honor, written by the staff. “Thank you for adopting us!”
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