Governor Awards Hero Dog ( “Washingtonian of the Day”)

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Governor Awards Hero Dog ( “Washingtonian of the Day”)

On Thursday, Washington Governor Jay Inslee presented the honor of “Washingtonian of the Day” to a most unconventional recipient – Tillie, the hero dog who guided rescuers to her doggy friend Phoebe on Vashon Island almost a week after the two dogs were reported missing in September.

BJ Duft, a 51-year-old business owner who is the master of both Tillie and Phoebe, recognizes that his two dogs are very different animals. According to Duft, Phoebe has always been the more adventurous of the two, always keeping a look out for new places to go and adventures to go on. Tillie, meanwhile, is the more cautious and pragmatic one, looking out for Phoebe and making sure she is always by Phoebe’s side.

This certainly came in handy last month, when Phoebe and Tillie wandered away from Duft’s home and were gone for nearly a week. However, Phoebe had gotten trapped in a cistern in the ravine on Vashon Island and was unable to escape. Ever the faithful friend, Tillie attempted to find nearby homeowners by running to them and running back to the cistern in the hopes of leading them to Phoebe.

Tillie’s rescue finally came when someone finally called the local volunteer organization, Vashon Island Pet Protectors, to report the sighting. Eventually volunteers found Phoebe trapped in the cistern and rescued her.

In return for Tillie’s dogged determination and bravery in the face of danger, she and Phoebe underwent a thorough grooming for their press appearance with Gov. Inslee. Inslee then gave Tillie a Washington apple pin on a ribbon to go around her neck, along with the written proclamation of Washingtonian of the Day. Said Inslee of Tillie, “everyone in Washington [should] celebrate the bravery and loyalty of this canine companion.”

Image credit: Elk Hart Truth

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