Pet dog ‘kept missing toddler safe’ in Australia
A pet dog is being credited with keeping a little girl safe after the pair wandered away from their family home and could not be found for hours.
Two-year-old Sophia set out across her family's property south-east of Melbourne at around 7:30pm on Tuesday.
The dog, a one-year-old Australian sheepdog named Poppy, went with her.
Police confirmed that Poppy's barking alerted rescuers to the whereabouts of the pair after a seven-hour search.
Rescuers found Sophia and Poppy 200m from a dam on the family's property.
The Australian Broadcasting Corp. quoted Sophia's grandmother, Vera Cook, who credited the dog with saving the toddler's life.
She said that Sophia was wearing just a nappy and T-shirt when she wandered off.
"The only thing I was thinking was well, hopefully the dog would have kept her warm," Ms Cook was quoted as saying.
"If [the dog] wasn't with her, I don't know whether they would have found her."
The family issued a statement thanking emergency services and promising that Poppy would be "well fed this evening".