Distressed Dog Won't Stop Barking At Pregnant Mom Until She Realizes The Dog's Trying To Save Her

Feb 16, 2021 by apost team

Every good dog owner loves their dog, but even the best-behaved dogs can be very annoying when they want to be — from barking when they want food to whining to go out for the tenth time in a row. But it turns out that occasionally a dog's bark can be life-saving. Of course, there are guard dogs who protect our homes with their barking, police dogs that can find contraband and trained rescue dogs who can seek out survivors in the wake of disasters. But this story — about a normal dog with a big heart — is different.

At first, this life-saving dog named Keola managed to seriously annoy her family with her barking, but it turned out that she might have been trying to save her owner’s life. Alhanna Butler from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, U.K., was pregnant, and when Keola kept barking at her, she decided to go to the doctor and was diagnosed just in time. The disease that Butler had contracted was so rare that doctors had to develop a new antibiotic in order to treat the bug, which they had never seen before. In any case, this story from 2016 shows just how much dogs can understand about us, and how beautifully they can support us through our major life events. Whether Keola truly could tell something was wrong remains to be seen, but Alhanna and husband Ricky Butler seems sure of her special ability, which seems to rival that of many trained doctors.

All photos were used with the explicit permission of Alhanna Butler/Facebook

Dogs are known for their love and loyalty — and sometimes even for their intuitive sense. For example, animals have been known to act erratically before major natural disasters like earthquakes and tsunamis, though the extent to which they can truly predict a bad outcome is debatable, according to experts. However, when an animal is able to sense something that a person cannot, it calls these skeptics into question. perhaps animals do have a sixth sense that we have just not found a way to study. 

Alhanna certainly seems to think that her dog Keola has a deep intuitive sense about things, so much so that Keola managed to save her life! The Mirror reports that Keola is an Akita who seemed to help Alhanna figure out that her pregnancy pains were more cause for concern than doctors had originally thought.

When a then-21-year-old Alhanna got pregnant, it was Keola who showed her that her pregnancy test, which had originally been negative, was in fact positive! Alhanna and her husband, Ricky, were childhood sweethearts who wanted to ger a Japanese Akita as they knew how intelligent and protective the breed was. They believed that Keola "chose them" when they went to view her at a local dog breeder in June 2014 and brought her home soon after. Eight months after Keola came home, the couple began trying for a baby, but they did not have luck for a while. Alhanna said, "We did test after test but with no luck. They just kept coming up negative. One day I had binned a negative test and gone out shopping."


All photos were used with the explicit permission of Alhanna Butler/Facebook

Alhanna continued, "When we returned, Keola had gone through the bin and had got the pregnancy test out of the bin. She had never touched the bins before so it was very odd. She was sat with it in front of her like she was trying to tell us something. I grabbed it and saw a faint second line — I couldn't believe it. I showed Ricky straight away and said Keola was saying I was pregnant but he said the line was too faint and it was just coincidence so we binned it again." To be sure, the young couple got a more expensive pregnancy test the next day, and it showed Alhanna that she was two weeks pregnant.

It is certainly amazing that Keola seems to be able to figure things like this out! "We were both over the moon and we realized that Keola was truly a special dog who could detect things that we couldn't," Alhanna said. It turns out that Keola's amazing intuitive sense was going to be integral as Alhanna's pregnancy progressed. When Alhanna reached 18 weeks of pregnancy, she began to fall ill more often. Keola would wait patiently with her near the bathroom and attempt to take care of her. However, as time progressed, Alhanna began to experience severe back pain and sickness that required the attention of a midwife at the hospital. The midwife told Alhanna that her small frame made the pregnancy difficult and that there was nothing majorly wrong with her. 

All photos were used with the explicit permission of Alhanna Butler/Facebook

"It was awful. People thought I was just being a wimp and kept telling me, 'Oh if you can't handle this, how are you going to cope with having a baby. But I could barely walk," Alhanna said when she recalled her experience. Keola seemed to sense that the discomfort that Alhanna was feeling was abnormal. She would not stop howling and crying at Alhanna, and would stare at her for hours, according to the Mirror. This behavior certainly affected Alhanna, who became worried that things weren't really as OK as the doctors told her.

"When the doctors sent me home and said there was nothing seriously wrong, she just sat staring at me so intently that it really scared me," Alhanna said, who recorded Keola's strange behavior and uploaded it onto Facebook. It was posted more as a joke than anything else but soon found friends and family calling and telling her to take Keola's behavior seriously. "Then my mum phoned and said 'listen to your dog, she is trying to tell you something'. It turns out she was absolutely right — and she saved our lives. She is the most amazing dog and I owe her my life," Alhanna said gratefully.

When Alhanna listened to Keola and finally went to the hospital, she collapsed immediately and had to be taken into intensive care, where she remained for a whole month. It turns out that the pain Alhanna was going through was due to a "superbug" that was so rare that it had affected only one other person before.

All photos were used with the explicit permission of Alhanna Butler/Facebook

The bug was antibiotic-resistant, so a whole new antibiotic had to be created especially for Alhanna in a lab to tackle the infection. The first two weeks were critical, and Alhanna was told that if she had come in even a day later, she might not have been as lucky as she was. The Mirror reports that Alhanna barely remembers those two weeks and that there was a very real possibility that she may have died due to her double kidney infection. 

"No one really understood how ill I was — but Keola did. She would nudge me and cry and I could never figure out why she had suddenly started doing this. Ricky said she was distraught whenever I went to work, when she had never minded before," Alhanna told the Mirror. "I now know Keola was definitely trying to tell me something was wrong. I just wish I had listened to her sooner," she added. 

It is certainly incredible that Keola was able to figure out the Alhanna needed critical help. After being in the hospital for more than a month, Alhanna convinced her doctors to let her go home for a couple of hours to let Keola know that she was okay. When she was home, her husband was able to film the whole heart-touching encounter. She uploaded a "thank you" video dedicated to Keola after her son, Lincoln, was born, and the video quickly went viral and has reached millions of people. "I have absolutely no doubt that both me and Lincoln would not be here today if it wasn't for Keola," Alhanna said. 

All photos were used with the explicit permission of Alhanna Butler/Facebook

Alhanna added that after she brought her newborn home, there were questions about Keola staying on in their home. "People have since asked me would we keep Keola now we have a 13-week old baby, but I just tell them she is our first child," she said. For many of us who have dogs in our homes, we sure can agree with the sentiment that dogs are just like another baby in the family!

Moreover, Keola has been a protector for the family and continues the same role even after Lincoln's birth. "I completely trust her around Lincoln. She loved him before any of us did - it was her who knew about him first. She loved him before he even knew she existed and she would rest her head on my tummy," Alhanna said about Keola. With Lincoln home and safe, Keola is getting in her fair share of love for the baby as well! "Now she spends all of her time by his side. She sleeps by his cot and she stands guard of him all the time. In Japan, Akitas have been known as 'babysitting' dogs and she definitely lives up to this. She is inseparable from him," Alhanna said

Stories like these are beautiful to hear about and show just how wonderful dogs can be as pets in our lives. Keola has literally changed the trajectory of Alhanna's life. We are glad that everything worked out well with this family and are so happy that Lincoln has such a wonderful friend in his pet! 

All photos were used with the explicit permission of Alhanna Butler/Facebook

What do you think about this extraordinary story? Have you ever experienced such behavior from a dog? Tell us in the comments and pass this story on to your friends and loved ones. 

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