Freeway Frida, as her rescuers have named her, is a fighter. But you wouldn’t guess it by how she acted on May 14 when she was picked up from a highway median.
Galt, California, police officers found the German shepherd emaciated, weak and without any resources, stranded on the median of Highway 99; she had been there for five weeks, reports KCRA.
Frida’s desperate freeway journey started on April 10 when she fell off her owner’s truck and onto the median. The owner did not realize the dog had fallen off, but other drivers did, many of whom called 911.
Police went to search for Frida that day, but were unable to find her. For the next five weeks, calls came into the station from drivers who spotted the dog on the median or roaming the freeway, but each times officers went out to rescue the pooch, she couldn’t be found.
Finally, on May 14, Galt Police Officer Silvia Coelho got a call about Frida, and she sensed this was it.
“We are getting her today, that’s it,” Coelho had said to herself. “It’s Saturday morning (and) traffic is light. We are getting this dog.”
The officer was right. When she arrived Frida was still there cowering on the median with a broken leg and no food or water, so Coelho and California Highway Patrol shut down part of the freeway and went to bring the dog to safety. The German shepherd tried to put up a fight, but too exhausted from her ordeal, she quickly gave in.
“She just laid down and looked at us with those big brown eyes and was like, ‘Oh thank you,’ and like, ‘Please help me,’ ” Coelho said.
Frida was immediately taken to VCA Bradshaw Animal Hospital where she weighed in at just 44 lbs. A dog her size should weigh at least 65.
Veterinarians guess that she subsisted on rainwater and what she could find in the brush of the median, but all agree the fact that Frida survived five weeks stranded in such an dangerous situation is a miracle.
Even more miraculous is the way Frida has bounced back. Once she realized that police and vets were trying to help her, terrified Frida transformed into a sociable and loving dog.
“You could tell that she had a good home some place because she responded well to people being around her,” said her veterinarian Dr. Mike Johnson.
Since arriving at the animal hospital, Frida has gained back 10 pounds and is recovering more each day. After her ordeal, she is suffering from a broken tibia, fibula and tendon damage. Doctors don’t know if the dog’s leg will ever heal fully, but they do know Frida will make for a perfect pet regardless.
The hospital and police have tried to locate the dog’s original family, but with no chips or tags it is next to impossible to find contact information. Luckily it hasn’t been too hard to find new prospective parents for this pooch.
After rescuing Frida from Highway 99, Officer Coelho became understandably attached to the dog, visiting her regularly at the vet. According to the Los Angeles Times, the pair have become so bonded that Coleho and her husband have decided to add one more furry kid to their force at home once Frida is well enough to leave the hospital.