Image courtesy of Tampa Bay Times
Yolanda Sevogia’s neighbor, Stacey Savige, knocked on her door one morning asking if she could keep an eye on a lost terrier she found roaming around the local elementary school. Yolanda agreed to watch the dog, but told Stacey it would only be for the day. The two women took photos of the dog and printed off 4,000 FOUND fliers, stuffed them in mailboxes and also placed an ad on Craigslist.
In the meantime, Yolanda went to the dollar store and bought some pet supplies, warning her two sons not to fall in love with the dog. At the time Yolanda’s son Azaiah was 10 years old, and Christian was 21 years old. Christian has Down syndrome and an assortment of other ailments, and had recently undergone heart and kidney surgeries.
Four days later Yolanda was still looking after the dog, who they had started to call RaeLee (pronounced Riley). When she arrived home from work, the dog flung himself against the screen door and barked madly at her. As soon as she opened the door, RaeLee sprinted into the boys’ room where Yolanda found Christian in the middle of a violent seizure. RaeLee ran over to Christian, but as soon as Yolanda bent over to help him the dog went silent.
“If he hadn’t come to get me, the neurologist said Christian would have choked on his own blood and died,” Yolanda reported to the Tampa Bay Times. At this point, no one had called to claim the dog so Yolanda decided to keep him.
The next morning Stacey got a call; a man named Randy recognized his lost dog and called the number on the flier. Stacey started crying, and told him, “That dog saved my friend’s son.”
Randy drove to Yolanda’s house to pick up his dog, and saw Azaiah crying on the porch and Christian in the window. After a few moments Randy said, “Maybe Odie was supposed to find you, maybe you should keep him.”