In a deluge of bad news from Greece, Lua, the dog photographed clinging to a rock in the sea off Mati after escaping the Greek wildfires, has brought a glimmer of hope.
Lua became a symbol of the disaster that killed at least 91 people and injured more than 170 as it swept through Attiki last Monday.
Animal lovers and rescue organisations helped find the dog’s owners and on Friday she was reunited with them after they feared she was dead.
Meanwhile volunteer vets and animal rescuers have been hard at work helping injured animals and where possible reuniting them with their owners.
Footage from one animal rescue team shared online showed one such example as rescuers discovered a terrified dog cowering inside an outdoor over where she had sought refuge. The house was completely destroyed but the dog, though frightened and upset, was otherwise in good condition
Meanwhile, the StreetDogs in Volos-Greece group, which looks after stray dogs has confirmed that Lua was safely back with her owners.
‘She has been found by her people! Her name is Lua! They didn’t let her die. They adore her! They didn’t know what to do in the chaos,’ it said.
A friend of the family told local media Lua ran off after becoming frightened during the fire and wriggled out of her collar and lead.
The terrified dog ran towards the sea where she swam out to the rock. Lua’s owners had been looking her for hours, before learning from social media that she had survived the fire lying on the rock at Kokkino Limanaki beach.
They were reunited with their pet and together they boarded a boat evacuating people stranded by the wildfire to the nearby port of Rafina.
The family has since returned to their home in Athens. Lua was originally a stray dog but was taken in by the family who have a summer house in Mati.