Dan O’Grady of Akron, Ohio, is a long-haul truck driver with a heart for animals. Because he loves all creatures with four legs, this story has a happy ending. Without him, it likely wouldn’t have. O'Grady never suspected that the animal he rescued had something else in mind as well.
Passing through Jacksonville, Florida, O’Grady noticed a little dog alongside the road. He knew he couldn’t leave him behind like that, so he exited the highway and headed back to help the pup. He only hoped he could get to the dog before something bad happened. Fortunately, the dog — a Jack Russell terrier — was right where he’d last seen him, and O’Grady decided to rescue him.
The terrier, however, had other plans. As O’Grady tried unsuccessfully to coax the pup to come to him, the dog ran into the woods, barking frantically. The truck driver followed, and what he found there was amazing.
In an apparent abandonment, a small, fluffy, white bunny had been left behind with his buddy the terrier by his former owners. The little rabbit was in pretty bad shape, and the pup was dirty and thin. O’Grady decided they both needed rescuing.
After the truck driver gently picked the bunny up, the terrier seemed satisfied and calmly followed O'Grady back to his truck. Both critters became passengers that day. The truck driver gave the pup some sandwich meat and stopped to buy the bunny some salad at a truck stop.
He then drove to an animal shelter and found out that though the folks at the shelter would happily take Highway, O'Grady's name for the dog, they had no facilities for keeping Interstate, his name for the rabbit.
So, leaving the dog behind at the Florida shelter, O’Grady and Interstate started the long trek together back to Ohio, where there was a shelter called the Humane Society of Summit County that took in bunnies, guinea pigs and the like. They gladly offered Interstate a place to stay, and O’Grady left him in good hands and went on his way.
Who knows what would have happened if the truck driver with the big heart hadn’t stopped that day? What we know did happen was that Highway got a forever home in Florida, and Interstate is waiting for someone to adopt him in Ohio.
Thank goodness for people like truck driver Dan O’Grady and shelters like the Humane Society of Summit County!