A mixed-breed dog named Orejon saved the life of a weeks-old infant in the Argentinian town of Vincent Lopez. Orejon, which translates to Big Ears, discovered the baby on the street during a chilly spring evening.
The story began when a neighborhood man, Santos Palomo, went to check on the house of a neighbor who was on vacation. When Palomo returned home, he saw Orejon looking upset.
Everyone in the neighborhood is familiar with the big-eared dog, so Palomo knew something was wrong when Orejon acted strangely. The dog was barking and sniffing a nylon bag on the ground.
Palomo approached to see what Orejon had found and was shocked to see a tiny baby. He picked up the infant, who weighed under five pounds, and saw the child’s lip quiver. Once he realized the baby was still alive, he quickly called the police.
A squad car arrived and took the baby directly to a hospital. Doctors there determined that the child was approximately 15 days old. He had early signs of hypothermia and malnutrition, but with proper care, he would be perfectly healthy.
The hospital staff moved the baby to the maternity ward where workers became attached the orphaned boy. They decided to baptize him and name him Mateo since they didn’t know his name or if he even had one.
Orejon’s owner, Enzo Gimenez, didn’t find out about his dog’s heroic deed until the next morning. After hearing about the series of events, he was happy but not surprised.
Giminez said that his girlfriend gave him Orejon when the dog was a puppy. Even then, they could tell he was a special dog. While they would never have guessed that the dog would save a baby’s life, they had witnessed another heroic deed by the small dog.
Just two months earlier, Orejon was at a neighbor’s house keeping her company. The dog noticed that a small fire had started in the house. He whimpered and barked as the flames grew, and the neighbor escaped the house just in time thanks to Orejon.
Everyone in the neighborhood knows the dog thanks to his good deeds and friendly personality. He roams the area freely, only checking in with his owner periodically.
While Orejon is undoubtedly a hero, Palomo also deserves praise for his attentiveness. After police had taken Mateo to the hospital, Palomo followed and remained with the baby until the hospital wouldn’t let him stay any longer.
Palomo is a painter and works full time, but he visits Mateo every chance he can. When he can’t visit the boy, his niece goes to check in on his progress.
The neighborhood has taken up the cause of the abandoned boy, and several families have offered to adopt him. Though Mateo had a harder beginning to his life than most of us could imagine, his plight has inspired a feeling of togetherness in the neighborhood. With friends like Palomo, Orejon, and the town of Vincent Lopez, we think Mateo is going to be just fine.