Valia Orfanidou was travelling down a quiet road in rural Greece when a little black and white dog leapt from the bushes and began racing after her vehicle.
Watching him in the rearview mirror, Orfanidou could tell the little dog was intent on following her.
Orfanidou told The Dodo, “My thoughts were, ‘Oh no, another one.'” “There are around 3 to 5 million stray dogs in Greece. “The streets are like an open-admission shelter here; anyone who no longer wants their dog dumps him on the streets because there is no other option.”
Orfanidou fosters and rescues dogs in Greece, and she writes about it on her blog, The Orphan Pet. She realized she couldn’t abandon the helpless shepherd mix in the middle of nowhere, so she pulled over on the side of the road and attempted to persuade him inside.
“When I came to a halt, he hid beneath the car’s wheels,” Orfanidou explained. “Whenever I approached, he would hide, and after I backed up a few feet, he would emerge and bark at me as if he was trying to communicate.”
She was able to retrieve the puppy and place him in the backseat of the car after approximately 10 minutes of playing hide-and-seek with him, when he began wagging his tail contentedly.
Orfanidou took him to the vet for a checkup, and despite surviving on whatever food he could find on the streets, the dog appeared to be in good health.
With the right care, the dog, now named Bandit, is growing quickly in a loving foster home in Athens.
Orfanidou described him as “independent and strong-willed.” “However, he is incredibly devoted and eager to learn.”
Bandit is eagerly learning about his new world — about soft beds, full food bowls, kind humans and long walks.