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Guard Dog Wouldn’t Leave Goat Flock During California Fires—And Lived to Tell the Story
By Andrew Amelinckx
The fire the Hendels barely escaped was part of the Northern California firestorm that has so far claimed 40 lives—including one of their neighbors, Lynne Powell—destroyed countless homes, and caused billions of dollars in damage.
"Later that morning when we had outrun the fires I cried, sure that I had sentenced Odie to death, along with our precious family of bottle-raised goats," Roland Hendel wrote in a recent Facebook post.
Odin, named after the Norse God, was known for his fierce loyalty to his flock, over which he shared guarding duty with his sister, Tessa (who was taken to safety with the family). According to his master, it was nearly impossible to separate him from the goats, even in the best of circumstances. "I made a decision to leave him, and I doubt I could have made him come with us if I tried," wrote Hendel.
Odin with his goat flock after the fire.Roland Hendel / Facebook
Finally, on Oct. 10, after the fire subsided enough for the family to return to their home—they had to sneak in via a backroad due to roadblocks that had been set up—they found the property in ruins, with trees still burning and an estimated million dollars worth of damage. They expected the worst in regard to Odin and the other animals. Suddenly the goats appeared (unscathed save for a minor, small burn on one) and raced towards them, followed close behind by Odin, his fur singed, his whiskers melted, and hobbling along favoring his right side. Hendel couldn't believe it, calling it a miracle. Even more amazing, Odin had adopted several baby deer who huddled around him for safety.
Part of the Hendel's devastated property in Santa Rosa. Roland Hendel / Facebook
There was a slight scare on Oct. 14, when it appeared that all the animals had wandered off the property. They returned later that day, however, and Hendel suspects they likely went in search of their humans.
Odin was soon reunited with his sister. "He appears to be getting stronger, and his sister's presence will surely help to lift his spirits and take some of the burden off his giant shoulders," wrote Hendel, who'd rescued the siblings as puppies—this had been the first time ever the pair had spent even a day apart, according to ABC 7 News, which first reported the story.
All the animals were eventually taken to a temporary shelter where they are now recovering from their ordeal. The family has set up a YouCaring crowdfunding page, here, to help cover Odin's medical care and rebuild their property. Since first posting, the crowdfunding page has been shared more than 8,000 times and raised more than $64,000. The animals are doing well, said Hendel. Odin is getting stronger and enjoying all the attention and spotlight, especially a special steak dinner he and his sister were treated to along with a free visit to a local dog groomer.
"Odin has lived up to his namesake," Hendel wrote on Facebook. "Pray for him and his charges. He is our inspiration. If he can be so fearless in this maelstrom, surely so can we." If you'd like to hear more about this story in Hendel's own words, listen to this CBC Radio interview.
Reposted with permission from our media associate Modern Farmer.
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‘Companies Should Not Be Allowed to Use Hazardous Ingredients in Products People Use’: Michelle Pfeiffer Speaks Up for Safer Cosmetics
The beauty products we put on our skin can have important consequences for our health. Just this March, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that some Claire's cosmetics had tested positive for asbestos. But the FDA could only issue a warning, not a recall, because current law does not empower the agency to do so.
Michelle Pfeiffer wants to change that.
The actress and Environmental Working Group (EWG) board member was spotted on Capitol Hill Thursday lobbying lawmakers on behalf of a bill that would increase oversight of the cosmetics industry, The Washington Post reported.
By Julia Conley
Scientists at the United Nations' intergovernmental body focusing on biodiversity sounded alarms earlier this month with its report on the looming potential extinction of one million species — but few heard their calls, according to a German newspaper report.
The climate crisis is a major concern for American voters with nearly 40 percent reporting the issue will help determine how they cast their ballots in the upcoming 2020 presidential election, according to a report compiled by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.
Of more than 1,000 registered voters surveyed on global warming, climate and energy policies, as well as personal and collective action, 38 percent said that a candidate's position on climate change is "very important" when it comes to determining who will win their vote. Overall, democratic candidates are under more pressure to provide green solutions as part of their campaign promises with 64 percent of Democrat voters saying they prioritize the issue compared with just 34 percent of Independents and 12 percent of Republicans.
President Donald Trump has agreed to sign a $19.1 billion disaster relief bill that will help Americans still recovering from the flooding, hurricanes and wildfires that have devastated parts of the country in the past two years. Senate Republicans said they struck a deal with the president to approve the measure, despite the fact that it did not include the funding he wanted for the U.S.-Mexican border, CNN reported.
"The U.S. Senate has just approved a 19 Billion Dollar Disaster Relief Bill, with my total approval. Great!" the president tweeted Thursday.