12-Year-Old Aussie Shepherd Survives Being Picked Up by Tornado

dog survives being picked up by tornado

The dog’s name is Duke, not Toto, and he lives in North Carolina, not Kansas — but the tornado this 12-year-old Australian Shepherd experienced was a little like something out of “The Wizard of Oz.”

When the tornado passed through Davie County three weeks ago, Duke was “picked up in the mass of the swirling wind, picked up and tossed just like a rag doll,” his dog dad, Lewis Vannoy, told WREG.

Duke was thrown about 1,000 feet, landing in a pasture. Miraculously, the senior dog survived the ordeal. He did have major injuries, including a broken leg and damaged retina, but the lucky guy is expected to make a full recovery. (Amazingly, so is Vannoy’s horse, who was also picked up by the twister.)

Vannoy is thankful to still have Duke and his horse, although his house was pretty much destroyed in just 35 seconds, he said.

“I’ll build another house and we will make more memories,” Vannoy told WREG.

Keep Your Dog Safe During a Tornado

Vannoy urges everyone to take cover, with your pets, when there’s a tornado warning, which seems like really solid advice.

Here are more safety tips from the Humane Society of the United States:

  • Bring your dogs and other pets inside your house.
  • Keep emergency pet supplies in a tornado-proof room or basement.
  • Make sure your dog is microchipped and wearing a collar and identification tag at all times.
  • Practice getting your dog into a tornado-safe area.
  • Make sure that the area is dog friendly by removing dangerous items like tools or toxic products.
  • If you have to evacuate, take your pets and their emergency supplies with you.
  • After the tornado, take special care of your dog and other pets. Keep your dog on a leash and don’t allow him to roam.

Photo via YouTube

Laura Goldman

I am a freelance writer and lifelong dog lover. For five years, I was a staff writer for i Love Dogs. When that site shut down, I started this blog...because I STILL Love Dogs!