Dog Tracks Down Missing Teen, Reunites Him with Family

A search and rescue team dog managed to lead police to a missing South Dakota teenager and reunite him with his family.

Search dog Tango proved to be the hero of the day for a South Dakota family after he managed to track down a missing boy on Saturday.

The Pennington County Sheriff's Office said in a Facebook post on Sunday: "Around 6:00 p.m. Saturday evening, a 17-year-old was reported missing from an area south of Pactola Reservoir along Highway 385.

"Pennington County Search and Rescue K-9 Team was later called on to assist law enforcement officers from Pennington County Sheriff's Office, U.S. Forest Service and South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks in locating the missing teen."

It continued: "Search dog 'Tango' was deployed from the area the teen was last seen and was able to lead searchers to the missing teen, who was found safe and unharmed around 9:30 p.m. and reunited with family."

The post was liked more than 1,700 times and was shared 89 times as of Monday morning. Commenters praised the search team and, in particular, Tango.

One said: "So nice to hear some good news! Our rescue teams are the best. Tango, you are one awesome dog."

Another added: "God bless Tango and her human! And all the others involved in the successful search."

A third commented: "Thank you first responders, especially man's best friend, Tango."

Tango's handler, Tiana Schuster, told Newsweek: "This is what we train for—lots of hard work. With Tango, it was eight years in the making, and we absolutely love what we do. We are glad to be a resource that can be used and helpful in circumstances like this."

The Pennington County Sheriff's Office also told Newsweek: "An out-of-state family was vacationing in the Black Hills. There was some sort of dispute and the teen voluntarily left the family and was hiding.

"Law Enforcement spent many hours looking for the 17-year-old including launching a drone. Pennington County Search and Rescue finally sent out Tiana Shuster and her dog Tango. She said the boy was very well hidden but the dog apparently let them right to the teen."

Tango is not the only dog to have played a major role in protecting a child, with some risking being seriously hurt to help them.

Last year, a pet dog was bitten "at least" four times by a venomous snake in São Paulo, Brazil, while trying to protect a 12-year-old child from the animal.

The attack, which took place in the Guaratuba neighborhood of Bertioga on the morning of Friday, November 27, left Typhoon hospitalized, but the seven-year-old family dog was said to have been recovering.

Bryan Myers, of New Jersey, rescued Sadie, a six-year-old German shepherd, but didn't know that just months later, she would be rescuing him. After recovering from COVID-19, 59-year-old Myers suffered from a stroke while he was sleeping.

Myers fell ill and couldn't control his muscles.

Sadie approached Myers, laid next to him, and kissed his face. Myers reached for Sadie's collar, and the dog instinctively started pulling backward, helping Myers slide across the floor and out of the corner he was trapped in.

Tango the dog helped find the boy
Tango the dog helped find the missing boy. In this photo, Tango is pictured with a member of the Pennington County Search and Rescue team. Pennington County Sheriff's Office