Puppy leads rescue party to missing Siberian girl

National/World News
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SAKHA REPUBLIC, Siberia — A three-year-old girl who survived 11 days in a Siberian forest was saved this month after her puppy led rescuers to her.

Karina Chikitova went missing in early August, the Siberian Times reported. While lost, Chikitova ate wild berries and drank river water in the remote Sakha Republic, which is a habitat for bears and wolves, the newspaper reported.

When the little girl’s dog returned to the village, rescuers said they feared the worst.

“If she was to hug her puppy, we thought, this would have given her a chance to stay warm during nights and survive,” Afanasiy Nikolayev, a spokesman for the Sakha Republic Rescue Service, told the paper. “So when her dog came back we thought, ‘That’s it.'”

But the excited puppy actually led rescuers to Chikitova, who “looked surprisingly well,” Nikolayev said.

The little girl was hospitalized but expected to survive.

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