The Oregon Trail Dog Names in Pop Culture
While the story of Bobbie is not based solely on the Oregon Trail, it is a story about Oregon and a very heroic dog and is so worth telling. Bobbie was a two year old Scotch Collie/English Shepherd mixed breed dog. He was with his owners visiting relatives in Wolcott, Indiana when he was attacked by three other dogs and ran away to escape. The family searched extensively to try and find Bobbie but had no luck. Sadly, they returned to their home in Oregon without their beloved dog. Six months later, (this was in 1923 by the way) Bobbie returned to Silverton as a mangy, dirty scrawny mutt with his toenails worn to down to nothing. He showed all the signs of having walked the entire distance which would have included swimming rivers and crossing the Continental Divide during winter. It is estimated that he crossed at least 2,551 miles - including plains, mountains and deserts. People who had fed and sheltered Bobbie wrote to the family telling them of their story, and from this the Humane Society of Portland was able to estimate his journey. What an amazing dog, with his loyalty severely tested, he traveled so far to be back with his family. The story of the dog's journey, the people who helped him, and how he found his way home is quite astounding.
Another heroic dog from Oregon is Velvet- a black Labrador/Shepherd cattle mixed breed pooch. Velvet and three climbers toppled off a ledge at 8,300 feet elevation on Mount Hood, when hit by a severe storm that separated them from five other members. The five managed to walk out and raise the alarm, but the other three had to endure the freezing night. After activating mountain locator units for searches to find them, they endured 70 miles per hour winds and freezing conditions. Velvet spent the night going from person to person and keeping them warm as they huddled under the little protection they had. Luckily all were rescued the next day and Velvet was declared a hero for saving the lives of the three men. Velvet is a typical dog who thinks about their owner and friends more of themselves. Because of this dog, the story had a happy ending and could return with his owner to Milwaukie Oregon. The year was 2007, during the month of February.
And while stretching the location of this post somewhat, the classic story of Old Yeller, set in 1860s, is a heart-warming and heartbreaking story set in post U.S Civil War Texas. A Labrador Retriever/Mastiff mix named Old Yeller finds a home with a family, and tells the story of at first reluctance to accept the dog, to totally accepting him because of his loyalty and protection to the family. After rescuing young Travis from an attack from feral hogs, he becomes a hero. We won't tell you the ending but encourage you to read this book or see the movie. It is sad at the end, but has a happy twist. Once again, it stresses how dogs give their soul to their owners. How they protect and love their humans and how we are so lucky to be blessed with such strong loyalty and devotion. The word 'yeller' is the way the word yellow sounded in the local dialect- so yeller is interpreted as the color yellow.