Ranger, a Labrador-mix, was found in a serious condition after refusing to leave his owner when the pair got lost on a hiking trip in Arizona, US.
Ranger, the Labrador mix, stayed with owner Donald Hayes to the bitter end
A loyal dog who remained by his owner’s side after getting lost during a hike expedition, until the body of the pet was found and the animal rescued.
Donald Hayes, 74, went missing on Mingus Mountain in Prescott National Forest, Arizona, last Friday.
Mr Hayes called the forest patrol team to raise the alarm and was told rescuers were en route and to stay where he was.
He decided not to wait, and he tried his best to figure it out on his own. He turned off his phone to save the battery.
The hiker’s body was discovered on Wednesday afternoon in a rugged area that was difficult to reach, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office (YCSO) said in a statement.
Mr Hayes’ dog, a Labrador-mix named Ranger, was found in a serious condition suffering severe dehydration and exhaustion.
He was given oxygen and fluids before being taken to a vet.
Now, a crowdfunding campaign is being launched in order to help Ranger pay his veterinary bills.
The GoFundMe page was set up by search and rescue volunteer Dondi West, who wrote: “We hope to pay the veterinary bills to ease the pain of the family tragedy and help in Ranger’s recovery.
“Your donation is the start of his return to health. “
So far the fundraiser has accumulated more than half its $5,000 target.
Additional funding beyond Ranger’s immediate critical care will go to Mrs Hayes.
One person donated the following: “What loyal dogs. This canine stuck with his master to the absolute and unfortunate end. “
The Mingus Mountain region has elevations of up to 7,800 feet, according to the US Forest Service.
Search and rescue teams spent six consecutive days looking for Mr Hayes.
Sheriff David Rhodes said: “I thank all the volunteer search and rescue teams and others who gave their time to locate the victim and bring him home.
” Our searchers used every tool they had to locate Mr Hayes, and didn’t give up.
“Our condolences go out to Mr Hayes’ family, and we wish the outcome could have been different. “