Dogs Stranded for 16 Days, Rescued

Posted at 1:52 AM, Mar 31, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-31 01:52:46-04

HOWARD CITY, Mich. — A ride on a four wheeler led to a bizarre find for Todd Luchies.

“[I] was driving around the top here. [I] came around and uh, heard a bark,” he explained.

Luchies couldn’t pinpoint where it was coming from at first. It was too dark Wednesday night, and the barking went silent.

Concerned for the dogs, he went home to get his wife Heather and some flashlights.

“So I came with him,” she said. “Flip the light on and there were two poor souls down there,” Todd said.

Two Jack Russell terriers somehow ended up in the bottom of a burned out silo.  They were stuck five feet below the opening.

“One was very skittish. She was scared, she was very thin, just skin and bones, and the other one was a little more jumpy, a little more hyper,” Heather Luchies described.

The Luchies brought back food, water, and something comfortable for the dogs to sleep on.

Unsure of the dogs’ temperament and limited by darkness, the couple came back in the morning to rescue the pooches. Heather captured the rescue on her cell phone.

“We brought the dogs to a no-kill animal shelter in Morley,” she said.

“And then the woman from the shelter, she called me and said, ‘I found the owners, within about a half hour,’” she recalled.

Todd and Heather still hadn’t met the owners of Lilly and Dillon until now.

The shelter had given Heather the owners’ phone number. FOX 17 called up Kathy Durfee to have her and her husband meet the Luchies.

They greeted each other about a hundred yards from the silo. “Hi, how are you!” Heather said.

“Glad we could help,” Todd said.

Russ Durfee said, “They were gone for two weeks and two days, and about two or three days before we got them back, we put out 20 or 30 posters.”

He said he called every veterinarian office and shelter within 20 miles.

The Durfee’s live a quarter mile from the silo and say their dogs rarely escape and are never gone more than half a day. Although Lilly lost 8 and a half pounds, and Dillon lost 4 pounds both are now safe.

“I really didn’t think we were going to get them back,” Kathy Durfee said.

“They don’t even know how thankful we are,” she sobbed. “I know, I have dogs too, In understand, they’re your babies. Yes, they’re our children,” Heather Luchies said as she hugged Mrs. Durfee.