This is the almost unbelievable story of a dog that survived on an island all alone for four months. She had fallen overboard when sailing with her family through choppy waters off the northeast Queensland coast in November.
Jan Griffith's dog Sophie Tucker, apparently named after a late US entertainer, was believed to have drowned after going overboard. Little did the family know, the dog had mastered the doggy paddle at an early age and had no intention of giving up, or going down without a fight.
Out of sight of the family, Sophie Tucker was swimming doggedly and finally made it to St Bees Island, five nautical miles away, and began the sort of life popularized by the TV reality show "Survivor."
She was returned to her family last week when Griffith contacted rangers who had captured a dog that had been living off feral goats on the largely uninhabited island, in the faint hope it might be their long-lost pet.
When the Griffiths met the rangers' boat bringing the dog to the mainland they found that it was indeed Sophie Tucker on board.
"We called the dog and she started whimpering and banging the cage and they let her out and she just about flattened us," Griffith told the national AAP news agency.
"She wriggled around like a mad thing."
Griffith said that when the dog was first spotted on the island she had been in poor condition.
"And then all of a sudden she started to look good and it was when the rangers had found baby goat carcasses so she'd started eating baby goats," she said.
Sophie Tucker has readjusted quickly to life with her family, and life's little luxuries, such as air conditioning. I have the feeling she's also thrilled to go back to her old menu and won't be in the mood for a Gyro sandwich for a while, if you get my drift. Baaaaaa!