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Dog survives 8 days trapped in building rubble

/ Source: The Associated Press

A dog was found alive and in relatively good shape after spending eight days trapped in the rubble of a building that exploded, critically injuring the pup's owner.

Lulu, a Springer spaniel, was rescued Sunday after the owner of the business that had been housed in the two-story building heard her whimpering.

"We turned off the radio and started calling out Lulu's name. Then we heard some yelping," Brian Hold, owner of Good Times Adventures, told the Summit Daily News in Tuesday's editions.

Lulu's owner, Brian Mislanski, had been critically injured in the April 19 explosion and remained at St. Anthony Central Hospital in Denver on Tuesday.

"I'm happy," Mislanski told The Associated Press on Tuesday. He declined to comment further, but friends who are caring for Lulu said they took her to visit him — with permission from the hospital.

Veterinarian Christine Murphy said Lulu suffered mild dehydration and had some trauma to her left eye. She probably survived by drinking melting snow and eating food she found in the debris, Murphy said.

Good Times Adventures is a snowmobiling and dogsledding business. Mislanski, a company van driver, was house-sitting for managers who lived in the upstairs apartment when the building exploded.

Hold said he was sorting through about 6,000 square feet of rubble from the explosion when he heard Lulu.

"After 45 minutes of frantic digging, we found her laying in a crawl space under 15 feet of rubble," he said. "She basically had a two-story building on top of her."

Fire officials initially said it could be a week or two before the cause of the explosion is known but they did not believe it was intentional or criminal. Fire officials did not immediately return a call Tuesday.

The hospital said it couldn't discuss Mislanski's injuries or condition.