A two-year-old girl, accompanied by her two family dogs, was discovered fast asleep in a secluded forest three miles away from her home. Police have shared that she was using one of her pets as a “furry pillow” while the other dog kept a vigilant watch over her.
This incident unfolded in Faithorn, a remote village located in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Thea, the toddler in question, went missing on a Wednesday when her mother, Brooke, briefly turned her attention elsewhere.
While in the company of her two canine companions, one of which was a massive Rottweiler frequently featured on social media, Thea embarked on a journey of three miles through the wooded terrain. Eventually, she grew weary and decided to take a nap.
Upon realizing her daughter and the dogs were missing, Thea’s anxious mother, Brooke, began calling out their names desperately. Soon, her family and friends joined the search effort, scouring their family yard and the dense woods nearby.
With 15 minutes passing without any success, Brooke took the decisive step of contacting troopers from the Michigan State Police’s Iron Mountain post at 8 pm on that Wednesday. This marked the initiation of a full-scale manhunt to locate Thea.
Troopers employed drones and police dogs in the search, with 50 local police and residents from Michigan and Wisconsin assisting in the remote woodland hunt for Thea.
Around midnight, a resident on an ATV discovered Thea asleep approximately 3 miles from her home. She was found using her smaller dog as a makeshift pillow while the larger dog stood guard, according to the police. The breed of the second dog remains undisclosed.
Lt. Mark Giannunzio remarked on Thursday, ‘She laid down and used one of the dogs as a pillow, and the other dog laid right next to her and kept her safe. It’s a really remarkable story.’
Brooke, who had previously shared photos of Thea with their family Rottweiler Buddy, conveyed her ongoing shock in a Facebook post: ‘It was the nightmare I never wanted to live through. I’m so glad my baby girl is safely home with us tonight. Her doggies kept her safe. I’m still in shock.’
Brooke, seated next to Alex while Thea rested on his knee with a bottle, recounted to WJMN Local 3 that as soon as she realized her toddler was missing, she hurried to her uncle, inquiring if he had seen her. A frantic search ensued, with the family desperately scouring the property.
She recalled, ‘We were searching all around the yard, up and down the road, screaming at the top of our lungs calling her name. We were calling for the dogs because they were missing too.’
Brooke elaborated, ‘Everywhere around here is completely wooded, deep thick woods around here and there’s a swamp over there so of course we’re freaking out.’
After 15 minutes of intense searching alongside friends and family, Brooke decided to call the police, saying, ‘I called the cops because at that point I’m just, I don’t know what else to do besides call the cops.’
She also contacted her husband, Alex, who rushed home from work to join the search.
Brooke expressed overwhelming relief upon learning that Thea had been located safe and sound.
‘I am still in just shock. I was in shock that she was literally gone in like a split second.’
Giannunzio confirmed that medical staff examined Thea after her discovery, and she seemed to be in good health.
Faithorn is an unincorporated village situated to the east of the Wisconsin state line and approximately 60 miles (97 kilometers) southwest of Marquette, Michigan.
DailyMail.com has reached out to Alex and Brooke for their comments.