Miracles show up in all sorts of ways. One miracle showed up for a 3-year-old girl from Sevier County, Tennessee, in the form of a very special stray dog.
When the black and white dog showed up, Sima Bentley wasn’t sure who he belonged to — but the dog made it pretty clear who he felt he belonged to.
“He showed up at my house about a month ago and hasn’t left,” Sima wrote on Facebook. “I’ve talked to everyone within a mile from me and nobody knows this sweet guy.”
“We have grown to love him but I know someone is missing him. He’s such a sweet fella and full of love. If anyone is missing him please pm me. You will have to prove he is yours to take him from my home. I won’t let him go to someone I feel might hurt him.”
Shortly after showing up, the wandering pup went from clingy stray to faithful protector when Sima’s granddaughter, Aurora Bentley, then just 2 years old, was playing in the yard.
Another stray dog came onto the property, and he started moving toward Aurora. Thankfully, the cattle dog showed up just in time.
“He ran across the yard and put himself in between Aurora and the other stray dog,” Sima told WATE-TV. “The dog attacked him instead of attacking the baby.”
The black and white hero — fittingly named “Oreo” — was taken to Sevier Animal Care Center where he received treatment.
“This handsome boy came in as a stray, let’s get him home,” Sevier Animal Care Center wrote on Facebook.
When Oreo was put up for adoption, the Bentleys knew they couldn’t let him go to just any family.
“At the time I was just on a mission to save the dog,” Bentley told WATE. “I didn’t even realize what had happened and we weren’t really looking to adopt a dog.”
But when the right dog comes at the right time, as any animal lover knows, you don’t let that perfect pup pass you by.
And the timing couldn’t have been better, either. Aurora’s 3rd birthday came shortly after the attack. In celebration of her special day, the family made Oreo a part of their lives for good.
“I tell people all the time that God shows up when you least expect him,” Bentley said. “And for me, that was God putting an angel in our yard that day. I’m so grateful that we get to keep him.”
“He’s going to be a very spoiled dog at this point,” she went on. “He’s going to go everywhere we go, he’s going to sleep in the house on a bed and whatever he wants, he’s going to get.”
UPDATE, May 15, 2019: Sima Bentley, the grandmother of Aurora and Aniya, responded to The Western Journal’s request for an interview and has provided an updated photograph of the girls with Oreo.
“Oreo is an amazing old man. He is doing great but still recovering from surgery. Right now we are still keeping him pretty quiet till he follows up with the vet next week.
After we know he is ok, we have several day trips to the mountains planned for fun days with him and the kids. He still remains very protective of Aurora and all the kids.
There are 5 in the house. He is still sore so does stay a little farther away from the 9-month-old for now. But still checks on the baby in his sleep.
Although he looks a little miserable in this picture, he loves the kids and all the lovins they shower him with.”