Where Is Wilson, The Search And Rescue Dog That Saved Kids?


Search and rescue dogs are the real heroes of the canine kingdom.

Every pooch has a sniffer, but not every pooch knows how to use it properly. Some dog breeds are simply much better at it than others. One of those talented canines are Belgian Malinois.

We often see them leading missions, on their way to find and rescue lost people or people in need. On numerous occasions, we have witnessed that these dogs were the reason why some people are still alive and well today. 

Wilson is one of those blessed puppers. This brave boy saved four kids lost in a jungle. He helped four innocent lives get saved and offered them a chance for a new beginning. 

But, what happened to Wilson? 

Where did the brave hero go?

Wilson’s Final Mission

Belgian Malinois rescue dog
Source: theguardian.com

When a plane crashed with indigenous children and their caretakers on board, search and rescue missions were immediately sent out to find them. 

As any good S&R team, this one had a canine officer. We all know how brilliant some dogs are when it comes to finding a missing person. 

But, a jungle is dangerous territory. Anything could happen out in the wild. The four children that were found spent 40 days alone in the jungle, surviving on berries and hiding from wild beasts. 

“He was the true hero because he beat the communications between the jungle and pulled his guide towards the wreckage of the aircraft”, one of the officers said. “It is said that the dog broke the rope that tied him to Lara (his guide) and started to do his thing… to follow the trail of the minors until he was lost.”

The rescued kids later said that they were accompanied by a larger dog from time to time. It seemed like he followed them, making sure they were protected until someone found them. 

As one of their drawings shows, the said dog was definitely Wilson – the courageous Belgian Shepherd.

a kid drawing of Wilson
Source: theguardian.com

Wilson helped the rescue team come close to the lost childrens’ location. Thanks to this dog, they were completely unharmed and safe. The hero pawfficer was last seen just a day before the kids were rescued.

“We saw him about 40 meters away and we tried to call him,” Carlos Villegas, one of the dog handlers, said. “My companion drew close to him, he tried to play with him in order to grab him, but Wilson ran off.”

Most likely, Wilson experienced some sort of trauma by getting lost in the jungle. Such an experience can change a dog’s brain chemistry and normal behavior. Apparently, Wilson didn’t recognize his teammates. He had no recollection of who they were before ending up in the jungle. 

So, Did They Manage To Find Wilson?

Belgian Malinois in jungle
Source: dailymail.co.uk

Luckily, the kids were safe and sound, but at one cost: Wilson was gone.

From the moment Wilson went missing on June 8th, his team was searching for him. Unfortunately, there was no success. Wilson didn’t wear a tracker, and even if he did, the military forces wouldn’t be able to detect his movement through the thick jungle. 

Two weeks after he went missing, the search party for Wilson had to be ended. Forces were needed elsewhere in the country. 

Our brave hero was declared lost in the jungle, but his humans still hope and pray he’ll show up one day. 

“Wilson will be remembered in our hearts and in the soul of the Colombian people, as we will do with the other canines and with our soldiers and police officers who have sacrificed their lives.” said General Sanchez.

They tried everything, even bringing two females in heat to lure Wilson. But, they didn’t have any success. 

Some even claim that they saw a dog similar to Wilson about 125 miles from where the kids were found. It’s highly unlikely, but miracles still happen. 

All we can do is wait a while longer to see if Wilson will ever show up from the jungle. 

One thing is certain – his incredible bravery will never be forgotten.