Charmaine Eby had just moved into a new apartment in Keremeos, British Columbia, and her 80-year-old mom, Carole, planned to get a place in the same complex. Up until then, she was living with Charmaine and her fur-babies — two Maltese Bichons nameed Shadow and Maybelline. Carole loved her four-legged granddogs and they adored her, but the family never could have imagined it would become a heroic story of a dog who saves his owner.
“They are very protective of Mom,” Charmaine Eby tells Woman’s World. “They follow her everywhere — they even sit outside the bathroom door when she’s in there.”
Charmaine was comforted knowing the pups were there to watch over her mom whenever she had to step out and leave Carole home alone. This was especially true one recent summer afternoon when tragedy struck.
Heroes come in all shapes and sizes
“Going to run some errands,” Charmaine told her mom. Then giving her pups loving pets, she told them, “You guys take good care of your grandmom.”
Not long after Charmaine left, Carole went into the kitchen to cook some chicken. As always, Shadow and Maybelline were right on her heels hoping for a snack.
After getting the chicken started on the stove, Carole headed to the bathroom, but in the hallway, she swooned dizzily and fell hard against the floor. Carole has diabetes and unbeknownst to her, had suffered a sudden spike in her sugar levels.
“I can’t get up,” she told the dogs, who as always, had scampered after her. Her phone was in the kitchen and Charmaine would be gone for hours. “I didn’t know what to do,” Carole says.
“Somebody, help me!” Carole began shouting. As she lay frightened on the floor, Maybelline curled up beside her with a front paw draped over the elderly woman’s shoulder. Carole heard Shadow scratching and whining at the back door and felt for the little guy, thinking there was no way he could get out.
But as luck would have it, the door had not closed completely when, earlier, Charmaine brought the dogs inside. The back door shook and rattled, until eventually, Shadow nosed and pawed it open. The grassy patch of yard was bordered by a two-foot fence. Shadow is less than 12 inches tall and a little plump, but he wasn’t about to let that stop him. His grandmom needed help and he was going to make sure she got it. Somehow, he hoisted himself over the fence.
A miraculous encounter
Eight houses and a wide courtyard away, dog sitter Sharon Wade was working on her computer when the two dogs she was dog sitting started barking at the back door. “What’s going on?” she wondered, and as she neared the door, she heard a loud yelping. Then, she spotted the pup standing at the bottom step. “Shadow?”
Two weeks earlier, Sharon had kept Shadow and Maybelline while Charmaine and her mom were out. It was the one and only time they’d met, and she had entered and left their house through the front door, so Shadow could not have watched her route back home. Now, as she gazed at Shadow, the look in his eyes told Sharon, I need help. Something’s terribly wrong.
The pavement was scorching, so Sharon lifted Shadow into her arms and carried the panting pup toward home. Nearing the house, she noticed the open back door, and she heard Carole calling for help. Rushing inside, Sharon turned off the stove and called 911, then alerted Charmaine. “I’ll stay with your mom,” Sharon promised.
“I don’t know what got into Shadow and how he knew to find you — we’ve never been near your place,” Charmaine marveled when she arrived home, just before paramedics got there.
“Dogs have a very keen sense of smell, and a strong smell memory. Shadow must have caught my scent and remembered me, then followed his nose to my house,” Sharon said. “It’s the only possible explanation — he ran past eight other houses on hot pavement to find me.”
Shadow the dog saves owner…and the day
When paramedics arrived, they checked Carole for injuries, and diagnosing only minor bumps and bruises, helped her to her feet. “I’m okay now,” she said, refusing a ride to the hospital. Paramedics were amazed by the story of the dog who saves owner by leaping a fence 3 times his size.
But Charmaine insisted on at least taking her mom to the doctor, where they learned Carole’s diabetes had gone from Type two to Type one. Her doctor adjusted her medication, but she also got an alert necklace, just in case. Carole isn’t worried, though. “I’m in good hands — or should I say paws,” she insists.
Charmaine agrees. “They love Mom as much as I do,” she says. “They’d do anything for her, I believe Shadow saved her life that day.”
For more one-of-a-kind pup stories, read on!