Stupid People Saved by Smart Dog

An elderly couple in Buffalo were saved by their dog when they were trapped in a snow storm not wearing heavy jackets.

Eve and Norman Fertig, who are both 81 years old, were out treating injured birds in the Wildlife Sanctuary on their Alden property on the night of October 12th. They left as the storm intensified but, were soon trapped by falling trees and heavy snow as they tried to walk back to their home. Eve realized they could die in the bitter cold but, fortunately, Shana was with them.

As the cold and snow chilled them both without heavy coats and gloves, Shana started digging under the snow and trees.


The dog actually dug a foot wide tunnel about 20 feet to the home.

Shana barked but, the couple hesitated, so they say the dog came back and tugged on Eve’s jacket. She says the 160 pound dog actually pulled her onto its broad back and crawled through the tunnel. Her husband held on as well as they slowly crawled all the way back to their home. They made it back to the back deck, opened their door and fell in to the house exhausted but safe.

Going outside during a snow storm without heavy coats and gloves? Good thing they at least had enough sense to bring their dog (actually a german shepherd/timberwolf hybrid) with them.

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Steve Verdon
About Steve Verdon
Steve has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and attended graduate school at The George Washington University, leaving school shortly before staring work on his dissertation when his first child was born. He works in the energy industry and prior to that worked at the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the Division of Price Index and Number Research. He joined the staff at OTB in November 2004.


  1. Can’t you imagine the thoughts of the dog as this was going on?

  2. cirby says:

    There’s actually an approved procedure for going outside in a snowstorm while not wearing a heavy coat or gloves.

    1) Walk one or two steps outside.

    2) Say, in a loud and convincing voice, “Holy crap, it’s cold!”

    3) Run back inside.

  3. Eneils Bailey says:

    Hope Shana made both of them piss before she would let them back inside and give them a treat.

  4. Triumph says:

    Going outside during a snow storm without heavy coats and gloves?

    Yeah, no doubt. I think this is the kicker:

    Eve and Norman Fertig, who are both 81 years old, were out treating injured birds

    First, how do you “treat” injured birds?

    Second, poor birds! If their saviors couldnt even take care of themselves, the prospect for the birds looks pretty dim!

    Thirdly–and I risk the pc police here–what the hell IS IT with old people and “wild” animals. All throughout my city, it seems once the first issue of “Modern Maturity” hits my neighbors mailbox, they are out there, throwing food scraps and seed to feed the damn pigeons and squirels!

    These are WILD animals people! Leave them alone!

  5. Bert Adams says:

    This has to be the great fantasy of 2006. I has to be pure “bullcrap”

  6. Herb says:

    Steve, you and those who don’t know enough, and apparantly know nothing about elderly people should be forced to live with,and made to take care of an elderly person for at least 2 weeks. Maybe then, you may just have a little compassion in yourselves.

    Your “joke” article” is the lowest form of bigotry and is a total lack of understanding of others.

    Shame, Shame on all of you.

  7. Dave Schuler says:

    It takes an enormous amount of courage (or something) to adopt a GSD-timberwolf hybrid. Such creatures are completely unpredictable. In their case it paid off.

  8. Steve Verdon says:


    I wasn’t making saying they are stupid because they are elderly, but because they went outside without the proper attire. Cirby hit that nail on the head, “Holy crap its cold!” the run back inside and grab the heave coat and gloves.


    Yep, if I were to ban any kind of “dog” it would be a wolf/dog hybrid, they are very unpredictable. Much more so than your standard “pit bull” type dog, IMO.