Stray Dog Joins Grueling Endurance Race And Wins A New Home

The dog traversed more than 100 miles through the jungle with a team of adventure race competitors and ended up with a friend for life.

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Arthur and team cross finish line
The team — and Arthur the dog — finished 12th in the race. Via Krister Göransson/Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society/Facebook
Stephanie Brown

The middle of a jungle is not exactly where you’d expect to find a friendly dog, but that’s where one man met a dog who would become his best four-legged friend.

Adventure racer Mikael Lindnord was in the middle of a roughly 435-mile-long race through the jungle in Ecuador when he happened upon a stray dog. It was the 2014 Adventure Racing World Championships and Lindnord, who is from Sweden, was taking a quick break with his three teammates before moving onto the next leg. As he took a bite of some food, he noticed a dog staring at him.

(C) Krister Göransson

Posted by Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society on Thursday, June 9, 2016

The dog did not look good; he had wounds on his back and smelled pretty bad. But Lindnord took pity on the animal and gave him some food. Two hours later, he and his team were deep in the jungle when they noticed the dog was following them.

Photo: Krister Göransson

Posted by Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society on Saturday, November 15, 2014

“We ploughed on through collapsing mud holes, across rivers, up steep trails; and although the new fifth member of our team was clearly fighting as hard as the rest of us, he kept up,” Lindnord writes in an article for The Telegraph. “I told myself it would be better if he went home, but we all agreed that Arthur – whom we named after the king – should get a share of our food too. That’s how teams work, after all.”

Arthur is just one of many stray dogs. Arthur Foundation is helping Arthur´s friends.
Photo: Krister Göransson

Posted by Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society on Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Arthur continued to tag along with silent determination. Then came the final leg of the race: a 37-mile, 14-hour kayak trip through mangrove swamps in the dark.

“It would be absurd to have a dog in tow and the race officials told us so,” Lindnord writes. “But as Arthur looked up at me with trusting eyes, I felt like he had staked his entire life on one meal ticket: me.”

Photo: Krister Göransson

Posted by Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society on Saturday, November 15, 2014

As soon as Lindnord launched off in the kayak, Arthur jumped in the water behind him. Lindnord had no choice but to pull the dog into the kayak with him for the rest of the trip.

The team — and Arthur — finished 12th in the race, which took them seven days to complete. Arthur had traveled about 112 miles of it.

Posted by Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society on Friday, June 10, 2016

After all they had been through together, Lindnord couldn’t leave Arthur behind. He brought Arthur home with him to Sweden where he received proper medical care.

He now lives a very comfortable life with Lindnord, Lindnord’s wife, Helena, and their young children, although Arthur still maintains his survival instincts — whatever food he can’t finish he buries for later.

The five in the Lindnord family.
Foto: Patrik C Österberg

Posted by Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society on Monday, December 26, 2016

Arthur inspired Lindnord to write a book about their journey, “Arthur: The Dog Who Crossed the Jungle To Find a Home,” which is available on Amazon. His incredible journey is also documented on the Facebook page Lindnord & Arthur Venture and Society. In addition, a charity to help stray dogs in Ecuador has been set up in his name: Arthur Foundation.

“I sometimes think that, in an inexplicable way, my whole 20-year racing career led me to Arthur,” Lindnord writes. “And I’m proud of that.”

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