BAY SHORE, NY (WTVR) – A patient in the hospital got an unexpected surprised when he found out his dog was waiting outside his first-floor window.
WCBS reports a husky named Zander was spotted by a nurse sitting on the hospital grounds.
"I think he missed me and he decided, 'This is it, I'm going to get him,'" John Dolan said.
Dolan said he was suffering from painful skin ulcers when a nurse at the hospital called and asked if he could come get his dog. He told her that he couldn't pick up the canine because he was in the hospital.
No one could believe Zander's incredible journey, especially Dolan. He said the dog had to cross a busy highway, walk down another road and probably even cross a stream.
Dolan's wife said Zander likely slipped out around 3 a.m. and scampered 2.1 miles from Bay Shore to West Islip.
But how did Zander find his owner? Animal behaviorists think it could be partly due to a dog's olfactory receptors.
"Some of them seem to have a special human-animal bond that leads them that way," Central Veterinary Associates' John Charos said.
A dog like Zander has 2-to-3-hundred-million scent glands, while humans have just 5 million. But dogs can also act on depression.
"My wife, Priscilla, said the whole time I was gone he was sitting in my spot on the bed in a ball," Dolan said, as if he was crying.
Dolan's wife also said she believes Zander's extreme loyalty comes from the fact that he rescued the pooch from a shelter.