Odin, the great Pyrenees pup who survived the Tubbs Fire after refusing to leave the family’s goats behind, is recovering well, his family says – as are the goats.
“He’s his old self again. So long as we don’t try to take him from the herd,” says owner Roland Tembo Hendel about Odin. “Old young self. He’s still technically a puppy!”
Odin and his sister Tessa are about 1.5 years old and come from the same litter.
Odin and the herd have been “enjoying all of the love and attention they are getting at the shelter” at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds, Hendel reports. For Odin, that includes pampering from Doggy Barber Pet Grooming and a steak brunch.
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Odin also got to pose with “some fellow heroes” from the National Guard, along with Hendel’s daughter, Ariel, and Daryl and Dixon the goats, as shown in the following photo:
Odin’s story has touched many hearts during the disaster.
As flames encroached on the family’s Santa Rosa property and the family had to flee, Odin refused to leave without all of the animals.
“When we had found relative safety we cried for Odin and our goats,” Hendel says on the family’s YouCaring page. “I was sure I had sentenced them to a horrific and agonizing death.”
Days later, the family was able to return to the property to see what remained.
To their disbelief, Odin – burned and battered but still alive – was there surrounded by the goats and small deer. It appeared that even the deer had sought him out for safety.
In another piece of the heroic story, Hendel says his friend and neighbor, Ken Link of Linked Vineyards, stayed behind during evacuations to protect his home and vineyard. Not only did Link successfully defend his property, he also went “twice a day to check on (Hendel’s animals) and bring them food and water and helped with the search for them when they were missing.”
The story inspired the family’s campaign selling T-shirts and grocery bags with Odin’s likeness and the slogan “If you need a hero. Become one.” Proceeds are going to the Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue Center.
There also could be an “Odin Strong IPA” in the works, according to Hendel.
Hendel says the family is “overwhelmed” by and very grateful for all of the support they have received.
And the family received some great news Thursday: Goatlandia Farm Animal Sanctuary in northwest Santa Rosa has a “wonderful temporary home for Odin, Tessa and our Herd.” Odin and Tessa prefer staying with the herd, and the animals can stay there until the family rebuilds structures, including the pump house that gives fresh water.
Regarding the attention Odin’s story has gained, Hendel says, “I feel honored that he has brought some joy and optimism during these difficult times.”