The slippery fish wriggled in his wife’s hands. He zoomed in on the magnificent catch. The photo turned from blurry to sharp.
That’s when he spotted something in the background, floating on the waves. Wait … Was it moving?! He shouted to his friend to pull the boat closer in.
Bruce and Robin and their friends, Michael and Shawn Sahr, had celebrated their birthdays together for years. It was a tradition of relaxing in their boat on the Gulf of Mexico.
Being that far out, the only things they expected to see were waves and other boats. Oh boy, were they wrong!
Bruce was already sitting with a drink in one hand and a fishing rod in the other. It didn’t take long for a sizable fish to get reeled in and flop onboard.
This big guy was worth a picture. He handed it to his wife and grabbed his phone to upload the snap to Facebook. But when the comments started pouring in, he noticed something strange.
Suddenly, his phone was pinging incessantly. Bruce smiled. He wasn’t used to his photos getting so much attention. But when he scrolled through the comments, he realized that his friends had noticed something in the background.
Confused, Bruce picked up his phone to take another shot, but this time he zoomed in. In the background, the blue, sparkling water took up most of the frame but a small hint of orange bobbed along the waves. Was it a buoy? No. Too small. Flotsam? Maybe. But as he squinted, his heart stopped. Was that … hair? He pointed and said, “Take us closer.”
The orange dot grew bigger. It was material, like a life jacket. Bruce held his breath, praying it was just garbage.
But then he saw something that made his stomach twist – along with hair, there were two arms and two legs… motionless. “Oh, god. Please no.” Horrific images filled his mind. The boat moved closer.
“Stay back,” he said to his wife. She didn’t need the nightmares.
He tossed the camera aside and leaned over the edge, feeling like his stomach would empty. Most of it lay under the water, except a little nose. Under the layer of dark blue, he saw the truth, and let out a relieved laugh.
“It’s just junk.” They all looked over and puffed out the same reaction. “A children’s toy maybe?” Bruce poked it with his fishing pole.
Without warning, the lump moved. He yelped and jumped back. Was something hiding in the toy? Under it? He poked it again. It moved again.
Bruce yelled out again. The burry pile of orange came to the surface; arms stretched out and weakly trying to swim towards the boat.
It coughed and sputtered up seawater. “Oh my god, get a blanket! Quick, he’s drowning!” Bruce and his friend leaned over and reached out.
They pulled it from the freezing water, seeing his wrinkled body shiver.
His wife immediately snatched it away, wrapped it in several beach towels and started to soothe it. “Are you ok? Don’t worry. You’re safe now. Where’s your family?” The four of them stared at the unbelievable scene.
The group had rescued a little Jack Russel dog. The moment he made solid ground (boat, in this case), he collapsed from exhaustion.
Not only that, but the little guy was very dehydrated. It took a solid hour for him to stop shivering and finally relax. But who did he belong to?
There was no identification or other details and microchips were useless there, so Bruce called the coast guard.
To their surprise, someone had indeed reported a dog missing from their boat … 3 hours ago. They exchanged details to make sure it was the right animal. The result?
It was very much the dog that went missing, and his name was Jagermeister.
“Give us your coordinates and we will come to you.” Bruce gave the numbers and then sat back to watch the amazing turn of events. It didn’t take long before the little guy started walking around.
“He was shaking like a leaf,” Robin later explained in an interview with the New York Daily News. They knew they had to get him warmed up as fast as possible.
“We got towels wrapped around him and got him calmed down – it took about 30 minutes,” Robin recalled. But how did Jägermeister take to the strangers who had saved his life?
Fortunately, Jägermeister didn’t mind at all. He seemed to understand that he was now in safe hands. “He was very friendly [and] very sweet,” Robin said.
What’s more, Jägermeister actually seemed to enjoy spending time on the boat with his new friends and wasted no time claiming a prime spot..
He nuzzled, played, and licked the four of them – beyond grateful to his rescuers.
He even got so comfortable he plopped himself on the top deck to do some sunbathing – no one could blame him for wanting to get warmer. But the puzzled friends still had a million questions.
“After he got calmed down, he hopped up on the top deck of our boat and sunbathed,” Robin said, laughing. Now that the little dog was out of the woods, they needed to reunite him with his owner.
When the coastguard finally arrived, the dog quickly leaped aboard the rescue vessel and made himself comfortable there, too. But where were his owners?
Bruce watched as the Jack Russel scampered on board the coast guard’s boat. It would be a quick trip back to his owner (who was waiting for him onshore).
The four friends decided to follow and watch the reunion. As they approached the shore, they saw Jägermeister’s owner run forward and into the water.
Relief swelled and the tears flowed. The dog jumped into his owner’s arms and wagged his tail furiously with joy.
But just what had happened? How had the dog ended up so far out at sea by himself? Thankfully, he had been wearing his bright-orange life jacket, or he may never have even been spotted!
Joey Myrick had all the answers. Joey and Jägermeister were on a boat trip when Joey stopped to check the hull.
While he was out of view, Jägermeister decided to leap overboard to go off on an adventure of his own. When Joey had discovered that his beloved dog was missing, he was worried sick.
When asked how she felt at the time of the reunion, Robin said: “Wonderful. It was heart-warming and heart-breaking at the same time.
We all got tears in our eyes… he ran up and the dog started licking his face,” Robin continued,“…we were all crying. It was really a very, very heart-warming moment. It was very happy!”