A Labrador's Bark Helped Find a Missing Texas Woman

If it weren’t for a devoted Lab who kept his owner company for over three days in the heat and rain, they could have died. They were finally found early Friday morning, though, thanks in large part to Max’s constant barking.

On May 3, KHOU reported that Sherry Noppe was last seen walking Max near the 7,800-acre George Bush Park in Katy when she was reported missing. Noppe was recently diagnosed with dementia, according to the local news station, although she was well-versed in the park’s pathways.

Even as storms swept over the Houston region Thursday evening, searchers feverishly searched for them. KHOU said that thousands of people joined a Facebook group set up in an effort to find Noppe, and that the page received a slew of tip submissions.

This story’s other hero, a K-9 officer, alerted the searchers to ascent at 3 a.m. Friday, leading them to turn off their ATVs. They could hear Max barking at that point.

Michael England, a family friend, told KHOU that “and we knew when that dog barked—there should be no dogs out there—that was her.” Even if she wasn’t completely lost, “she didn’t have a clue” on what to do.

The park’s trail led rescuers to Noppe, who was around 100 yards from her home and nearly two miles distant. After the rescue, her family notified the media that Noppe was in good health except for abrasions, bruises, and dehydration. Max was examined by a veterinarian and found to be in need of a bath.

Sherry’s son, Justin Noppe, told KHOU that his mother’s dog, Max, “had no leash, no collar, and stayed by her side for three days. Dogs are known for their loyalty, and this proves it.

In recognition of his bravery, two local fire departments have designated Max an “official” fire dog and are planning a ceremony in his honor. He also received a steak meal as a thank you for his hard work.

She said, “I think he’s a hero in our community,” Courtney Noppe.

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