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Family of hiker who died in mountains give health update on 'miracle dog' who lost half her body weight while waiting for help

Poppy Bilderbeck

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Family of hiker who died in mountains give health update on 'miracle dog' who lost half her body weight while waiting for help

Featured Image Credit: Dustin English Archuleta County Sheriff's office/ Colorado Missing Persons Organization

The wife of the hiker who was missing for two months and found passed away has given an update on his loyal dog.

Rich Moore and his Jack Russell Terrier Finney were reported missing on 19 August, shortly after they set off with plans to reach the summit of Blackhead Peak, just east of Pagosa Springs, Colorado.

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Rescue teams spent almost 2,000 hours searching for the 71-year-old and his dog but were unable to find them.

Over two months later, on 30 October, a hunter came across the pair. Sadly, Moore has passed away, but Finney was still alive, having loyally remained by her owner's side.

When Finney and Moore were found, they were flown off the mountain via helicopter and the man's best friend was quickly taken to a local animal hospital for examination and treatment.

After being given the all-clear, the dog was then reunited with Moore's family.

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Taos Search and Rescue took to Facebook to update followers: "Delinda and TSAR would like to send our condolences to the family, but are glad they were able to gain some closure as well as bring their dog back home."

But how's the little Jack Russel being doing since spending two months in the wilderness?

The pair went missing on 19 August. Credit: Colorado Missing Persons Organization
The pair went missing on 19 August. Credit: Colorado Missing Persons Organization

Dana Holby, wife of Moore, has since revealed the canine is 'doing well' despite losing half her weight while missing, according to CBS.

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She told the Associated Press on Thursday (16 November): "She has gained almost all of her weight back and her strength is almost where it was. She is the miracle dog.

"She is now three, very clingy, and will not let me out of her sight.

"Her ravenous appetite has calmed down, but at first she could not get enough to eat and wanted food at all times of the day and night."

Finney stayed close to her owner the whole time. Credit: Colorado Missing Persons Organization
Finney stayed close to her owner the whole time. Credit: Colorado Missing Persons Organization
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Taos Search and Rescue member Delinda VanneBrightyn noted if Finney 'could talk' she would definitely have an 'amazing story' to tell.

"We probably could not even believe the story the dog would tell," she adds.

She told the Associated Press the team are 'very glad' Finney could be reunited with her family.

VanneBrightyn reflected: "They have lost their loved one, but they still have this wonderful, loyal dog."

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Holby resolves: "People say, 'Is that Finney?' She is such a comfort to me and a great companion on hikes.

"I know that she was with Rich to the very end and somehow that should be a comfort. I don't know how she did it, but she was there when he needed her."

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence, contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677

Topics: News, Dogs, Animals, World News, US News, Health

Poppy Bilderbeck
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