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Elderly Dog Rescues Lost Girl In Australian Bush
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Elderly Dog Rescues Lost Girl In Australian Bush

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Max the Cattle Dog
Max the Cattle dog. Image courtesy of Queensland Police

A dog has been praised by the Australian police for staying with a three-year-old girl as she went through a night lost in bushland.

The girl, Aurora, was being avidly searched for after she had drifted away from her home in Queensland.

Aurora was followed by the 17-year-old cattle dog that belonged to her family, Max, of whom is partly blind and deaf.

For 16 hours the dog remained with the girl until relatives located them on a hillside on Saturday morning. 

Leisa Marie Bennett, Aurora's grandmother, declared that she'd heard the girl's voice from the location, around 2km (1.2 miles) away from home.

Bennett told the Australian Broadcasting Corp "I shot up the mountain and when I came to the top, the dog came to me and led me straight to her," 

Aurora had taken cover with the dog beneath a rock as temperatures dropped to 15C (59F). Fortunately only minor cuts were suffered.

The dog that stayed with the girl for over 16 hours
The dog stayed with the girl for over 16 hours. Image courtesy of Queensland Police

Over 100 emergency volunteers and workers had participated in the search that took place in the Southern Downs of Queensland.

Max's actions were praised by the Police, who named him as an honorary police dog.

Insp Craig Berry said, "At three years old, I would imagine that the young child would be very scared and frightened through the night and very cold," 

"You can hope the dog was good company for the child and kept her warm. It's a positive outcome."

Why so faithful?

Prof Paul McGreevy stated that mature dogs in particularly appreciate the contact of humans, citing this as a reason as to why Max remained with the girl.

McGreevy, a University of Sydney animal behaviour expert, also informed that the dog would have discerned the distress of the girl.

He told the BBC that "If the young girl was crying, it's likely the dog would have responded in ways that would have comforted her," he told the BBC.

"Remaining with her and standing by her would have been number one."

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