Tia Vargas is an avid hiker who loves trekking on challenging trails. She’s hiked all around her home state of Idaho, and she’s always trying new trails.
In July 2018, Tia went for a hike on Table Mountain with her 76-year-old father, Ted. While there, she faced her biggest hiking challenge yet.
Tia and her father began the hike together, but Ted’s pace was naturally slower than his daughter’s. After a while, Ted told her to go ahead of him.
Tia climbed up the trail until she reached Table Mountain’s peak, which sits at 11,106 feet. Right before she got to the peak, Tia passed two other hikers who asked if she had lost a dog. She shook her head, confused. The hikers pointed out the dog, and Tia approached him.
The dog was an English Springer Spaniel. The poor pup looked exhausted, and his leg was clearly injured. He wore a tag that said “Boomer.”
Tia’s heart melted when she saw the injured dog. She immediately knew she had to rescue the poor pup. Tia tried to get the dog to follow her down the mountain, but he couldn’t walk.
And so, Tia lifted 55-pound Boomer over her shoulders and started down the mountain with him.
After a little while, Tia ran into her father, who was naturally shocked to see his daughter’s new friend. Tia explained what happened, and the two continued down the mountain together. Ted helped as much as he could, but he wasn’t strong enough to carry Boomer.
Tia and Ted decided to take a less steep trail to make it easier for Tia. But this turned out to be a mistake—the trail was covered in snow, debris, and branches.
The hike got harder and harder. It started to rain, and Tia and Ted ended up on the wrong side of a river. The trail got so snowy and icy, they had to slide down the trail on their bottoms.
While dealing with all this, Tia kept carrying Boomer. Her legs were shaking, and her back ached. At one point, she felt like she couldn’t go any farther. But then, a miracle happened.
“I said a prayer and literally felt that somebody walked up behind me and lifted the dog off my shoulders. I felt that my ancestors or God sent me angels to help me carry that dog because it’s like the weight was gone off my neck. I kept looking behind me to see who had lifted the dog up but he was still there,” Tia told the East Idaho News.
Finally, Tia and Ted reached the end of the trail. Tia sprawled out on a rock, completely exhausted. Boomer sat next to her—after their ordeal, the two had already created an unbreakable bond.
Tia and Ted drove Boomer to a veterinarian. Along the way, Tia called the number on Boomer’s tag. His former owners were relieved to hear that he was okay.
“He walked out onto a snow crevice, lost his footing and fell 100 feet before rolling 200 feet,” Vargas says. “They went to find him but he was gone. They assumed he had climbed under a bush and died because there’s no way he could have survived that. He’s a miracle dog.”
At the veterinary clinic, Tia learned that Boomer had a few torn ligaments and was dehydrated, but he would be okay.
Tia also learned the Boomer’s former owners had recently sold him to a hunter, but they didn’t think the hunter would want him with his torn ligaments. Tia quickly said that she would adopt Boomer. He already felt like he was part of her family.
Now, Boomer’s leg has mostly healed, and he’s doing great! He loves cuddling with his mom, and he’s also a big fan of taking napping with his toys.
Boomer went through so much, but thankfully, the right person found him. Now, Boomer has found the perfect place to call home!
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