A family from Florida panicked when their 3-year-old boy, Marshal, suddenly disappeared one morning and they couldn’t find him anywhere.
The missing toddler, who was wearing only his diaper, has autism and can’t speak, making them even more worried about their chances to see their son again.
In an interview with WJHG/WECP, Marshal’s aunt, Kayla Stewart, said: “We were panicked,” adding that “all sorts of worst-case scenarios (were) running through their heads.”
The only thing that gave them comfort was knowing that Marshal disappeared with Buckwheat and Nala, their two loving and loyal family dogs.
Marshal was later found that same day, thanks to Nala and Buckwheat.
In an interview with Bored Panda, Corey Dobridnia, the Public Information Officer at the Walton County Sheriff’s Office, said: “Our expectations going into a search of that magnitude are always to get as many agency members on the ground as possible to aid in the search.
“Minutes are precious when it comes to the search of a child.”
Neighbor Carol Shelton also said: “(His) dogs were right there with him. (We’re) thankful that the pups kind of guided him along, I guess they kept him safe.”
Dobridnia added: “Marshal was in good spirits when found. A little dirty from the walk through the woods, but unharmed and happy. Dogs are loyal creatures. I feel like they probably knew to stay with him when they saw he was alone.
“Their instincts kicked in. They stayed with the boy and watched over him until he was located.”
The family was beyond happy to see Marshal back home. They were also proud of their furry companions, Buckwheat and Nala. “They’re doing their job,” the toddler’s mother said.
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