A tiny dog that fought with a coyote and was feared dead earlier this week was found more than 30 miles from where she was last seen by her family.
Cricket, a 12-pound Jack Russell terrier that went missing early Monday morning, ran more than 30 miles “as the crow flies” to within sight of a birth clinic her owner, Augustine Colebrook, used to run.
A tearful and overjoyed Colebrook said Cricket, whose head and neck are covered in puncture wounds from a coyote’s teeth, has not left her side since they were reunited.
Colebrook reported on social media that Cricket had journeyed from near Stewart Avenue and Thomas Lane in Medford to Redwood Circle in Grants Pass.
“Everyone says dogs are supposed to have this crazy sense of direction. She ran all the way and passed out within view of my old clinic. I spent a lot of hours there with her, waiting for babies to be born in the middle of the night, and she spent a lot of time there as a puppy,” Colebrook said.
“We closed in April 2016 and we haven’t been back, but it definitely could be perceived to her as her home.”
Cricket was found by a vet technician, Sara O’Brien of Grants Pass, who knew how to treat Cricket for dehydration and for her puncture injuries.
Cricket went missing Monday after Colebrook awoke around 4:30 a.m. to a screaming sound and witnessed Cricket fighting the coyote, which took off when Colebrook screamed.
Colebrook, whose family is moving to the East Coast next week, said she was in disbelief that the dog, after enduring the coyote attack, would run 30 miles “trying to find home.”
“I just couldn’t imagine that after being missing for that long, after those circumstances, that I would find her. No matter what happens, she always comes when I call her. When I couldn’t find her, I didn’t think she had survived,” Colebrook said.
“I think she was in shock and just running until she got to where she thought she would be able to find me.”
Colebrook said she had been heartbroken to think of leaving the Rogue Valley without knowing the fate of her four-legged family member, a registered emotional support animal. While Cricket usually provides emotional support for Colebrook, the tables have turned, Colebrook said.
“She looks like she’s going to make a full recovery in terms of her injuries, but her eyes look different after what she’s been through. She has a level of fear and anxiety I’ve not seen before, and she’s staying really close,” Colebrook said.
“A whole lot of my functionality is because of Cricket. We’re both kind of a mess right now, but I would have been devastated for a really long time to have lost her.”
Colebrook said Cricket, a common sight at the Medford Barnes and Noble where Colebrook spends time working online, is now a local celebrity.
“We were shopping for my daughter’s graduation dress, and two people stopped us and said, ‘Oh, my God, is that Cricket?' And I’ve had people from Australia and even Israel checking in to see if we found her,” Colebrook said.
“Everyone is just really happy to know that she’s OK. It’s just a good reminder that life is really so much bigger than the moment we’re in right now.”
— Reach Medford freelance writer Buffy Pollock at firstname.lastname@example.org.