We’ve heard of people being declared dead then mysteriously coming back to life. But animals being resurrected? Apparently, there are several cases of creatures that have managed to escape death’s icy grip despite previously appearing to have definitively bitten the dust.
Whether it’s dogs refusing to be euthanized, cats going for a ride in the dryer or lizards stuck in a time capsule, it’s clear from these stories that animals have the same survival instinct we do and will fight to stay alive, even against all odds.
Unfortunately for us, no one has managed to find out from these critters if they were sent back to complete some unfinished animal business or if they witnessed some form of animal heaven. Nevertheless, each of their stories are truly fascinating by themselves and add even more mystery to the already intriguing world of beast-dom.
Here are 10 shocking cases of dead animals coming back to life.
10. Roadkill Deer Frightens Officers When It Jumps Out of Car Trunk
One Tuesday night in 2013, police officers in Michigan expected little out of the ordinary when they checked on a man they deemed to be suspiciously sitting in his parked car. The man said, “I hit a deer. I figured you’d want to see it.” The officers then opened the trunk of the man’s car to make sure that the deer was tagged with the proper permit. But to their great shock, the deer hopped out, took a quick spill, then scampered into the woods nearby. Fortunately, the unbelievable moment was captured on the police car’s dashboard camera.
9. Dog Hit by Car and Prepared for Burial, Found Sitting Up the Next Morning
Reta McKinlay of Yelm, Washington was overcome by grief when Scamp, her 8-month-old Yorkshire Terrier Shih Tzu, escaped a fencing enclosure and was hit by a car in December of 2011. The puppy was found bleeding, his eyes unmoving, and his chest completely motionless. After the sad news had been broken to the rest of the family, Reta’s husband wrapped Scamp’s body in a blanket and placed the carcass under a wheelbarrow in preparation for a burial the next day. However, to the family’s great shock, on the morning of the planned burial, they saw Scamp sitting up, hurt but very much alive. The McKinlays had to shell out $3,000 in animal hospital bills but were overjoyed that their pet was alright after seemingly coming back from the dead. Rita later reflected, “We just said miracles happen, and maybe we were wrong and maybe because everyone was sad and praying, maybe God decided to let him live.”
8. Cat Buried After Being Found Battered and Dead Turns up Alive Nine Months Later
Maybe the “cats have nine lives” myth isn’t a myth after all. In 2009, Angelo Petrillo and his wife saw what they were sure was their ginger tom cat, Alfie, battered and dead on the side of a road near their residence in Milnrow, Greater Manchester. The heartbroken pet owners buried the carcass then soon after moved to a new home a mile away. However, nine months after the burial, the couple received a phone call from a former neighbor who reported that a cat had been desperately trying to get into the Petrillos’ old home. Befuddled, Angelo’s wife traveled to their old residence, and to her surprise, saw Alfie very much alive and even seeming to have gained some weight. Angelo is 100% sure that the cat they buried was Alfie but is nevertheless overjoyed that his beloved pet has seemingly come back to life. The feline now lives with the Petrillos in their new home.
7. Abandoned Puppy Euthanized but Comes Back to Life to be Adopted
In 2011, Scott Prall, an animal control officer from Sulphur, Oklahoma, found a cage with seven 3-month-old mongrels. Seeing that the puppies were in poor health, Prall scheduled a euthanization for the creatures and two other large dogs. Surprisingly, after all the lethal injections had been administered, one puppy remained alive, so another shot was given to the dog’s heart. That seemed to have done the job as the littlun’s heartbeat stopped, and all the carcasses were taken to a dumpster. However, the next morning, when the officer looked into the can, the puppy that had already been euthanized twice remained alive despite suffering the freezing cold from the night before and having had two mature dogs dumped on top of him. It was at that point that Prall knew that the puppy wasn’t meant to die. Since then, Wall-E, as the survivor has been named, has been offered to be adopted by more than 2,000 people.
6. Kitten Spun for a Five-Minute Drying Cycle Dies Then Is Revived
Kittens love to curl up on soft fluffy linens, and that’s usually a harmless habit. But it might not be so harmless when the fabric is a duvet cover inside a machine drier. That’s what Fudge, a kitten in Somerset, realized in 2010. Its owner, Ashlea Boon, turned the drier on without knowing that her fragile pet had crawled into the machine. After the cycle, Ashlea was horrified to see Fudge fall lifeless unto the floor when she pulled out her bed sheet from her drier. Ashlea immediately began rubbing Fudge’s stomach to revive her, and miraculously, the little feline began to start breathing. After surgery and a treatment of steroids, the kitten appears not to have suffered from brain damage and on the whole appears to be alright. “I would warn anyone else with pets to be aware when leaving the tumble drier door open,” Boon advised.
5. Dog Hit by Car Comes Back to Life After Being Euthanized (Twice)
Those who happen to meet a 4-year-old dog named “Lazarus” while they’re in Alabama would be justified to wonder about the canine’s unusual name. But when they hear about what this black shepherd mix has gone through, they would probably agree that the name is just perfect. That’s because before Lazarus was so dubbed, he had survived a terrible case of heart worms, a car accident that had badly damaged his leg, and euthanasia via lethal injection — twice. In fact, after his second lethal injection, the animal shelter in Ozark City had signed a document that Lazarus had effectively been “destroyed” in September 10, 2014. But even after the mutt’s heartbeat had been confirmed to have ceased, the next morning, Lazarus was up and had even eaten his leftover food from the previous day. Lazarus has since been adopted and is reported to be a well-behaved and happy house pet.
4. Duck Keeps Coming Back from the Dead
In 2007, a hunter in Florida shot a duck and placed the carcass in his refrigerator. Two days later, the hunter’s wife understandably freaked out when as she opened the refrigerator door, the creature lifted its head. The duck, who afterwards earned the nickname “Perky”, was immediately brought to a nearby animal hospital where veterinarians performed wing surgery on her. During the procedure, the ring-neck duck actually stopped breathing twice, but a thump on her chest and a needle through her body brought her back to life. The amazing story has since inspired a local firm to conduct a t-shirt sale to raise funds for the Perky’s long-term care.
3. Dog That Is Found Drowned and Lifeless After Flood Comes Back to Life
In 2011, floods submerged a substantial portion of Somerset, destroying huge amounts of property and claiming the lives of various animals. Among those lives was that of a staffy cross pooch found muddy, bloated, and apparently lying lifeless on a previously flooded field. As part of the recovery team’s usual procedure, the carcass of the dog was hosed down so that it would be more recognizable in photos taken of it for possible identification. But shockingly, the seemingly dead creature came back to life and later on appeared to be in good health and spirits. A council in southeast Queensland has put out a call for anyone who recognizes the pooch to come forward.
2. Dead Pet Hamster Resurrects on Good Friday
James Davis and Lisa Kilbourne-Smith, a couple in the UK, were looking after the pet hamster of their friends Nicki Gamble and Jamie Wynn. To their horror, on Holy Thursday in 2013, they found the rodent, Tink, lifeless in her cage. James and Lisa then proceeded to wrap the carcass in paper towels then buried it in a flower bed. Afterwards, they called Nicki and Jamie to tearfully tell them about the tragic fate of their pet. But the next day, Good Friday, Lisa’s dad was stunned when he saw Tink’s head pop up as he went to arrange the boxes in a nearby recycling bin. Apparently, the rodent had somehow come back to life, dug its way out of the ground, and climbed into the recycling bin to seek shelter from the cold. Needless to say, Nicki and Jamie were overjoyed by the development.
1. Lizard Buried in a Time Capsule for 31 Years Comes Back to Life
The horned toad lizard is known to live no longer than ten years. For this reason, no one could explain why one of them buried in a cornerstone of a courthouse in Eastland in 1897 was still alive 31 years later. A crowd of around three thousand was on hand to witness the opening of the time capsule in February of 1928. Understandably, everyone was shocked to see the entombed reptile spring to life, thereby earning it the nickname “Ol’ Rip” — a reference to Rip Van Winkle. The lizard became a celebrity overnight, even meeting United States President Calvin Coolidge. However, the animal died eleven months later, an autopsy revealing that the creature had suffered from pneumonia. The carcass was then embalmed and laid to rest in a velvet box at the courthouse lobby. But in 1955, the remains were stolen, and in the carcass’s place was an anonymous letter that claimed the whole thing to be a hoax. Later, the lizard’s body was recovered at the county fairgrounds, and to this day, many believe the story of this reptile’s miraculous resurrection to be true.