An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Randi the Wonder Dog finds her way to Robins

  • Published
  • By Jenny Gordon
  • Robins Public Affairs

Armed with a quick instinct and undeniable street smarts, Randi had been on the loose for almost two months.

It seemed the young German shepherd had been looking for some exercise and freedom, yet with that freedom came a price.

After being on the run since early June, her canine adventures would end inside a drainage pipe a short drive from the Green Street gate. Members of Robins Fire Emergency Services, 78th Security Forces Squadron, 78th Civil Engineer Group Entomology Shop, and several local animal lovers would lead Randi to safety once again. 

According to Peach County Animal Rescue, Randi had traveled over 40 miles during her four-legged travels. Resourceful and intelligent, she’d somehow escaped from the Fort Valley site. 

In trying to spread the word of her location, Facebook postings over the last few weeks read that the pooch had been lost in the vicinity of Ga. Highway 96 and Borders Road in Fort Valley, near Lane Packing Co.

A few posters noted the dog had been spotted in Byron, near Ga. 49 across from a fast food place. The sightings continued here and there, then nothing. In mid-July, one post read not a single sighting had been made in weeks.  

Randi’s trot through two counties continued. It would be easy for an agile, smart pup to hide from strangers. If she was moving, she was safe. 

Tirelessly, she’d move on, not knowing where to go but always going somewhere – one day wandering right onto the installation.    

She did the unthinkable – failure to stop at one of the gates. She pranced on in, hoping to be spotted perhaps? She’d come to the right place. If she meandered too long, someone would notice. And someone did.  

Melissa Odom, a human resources specialist with Air Force Reserve Command, was about to get off work last Thursday afternoon when she spotted Randi across from Bldg. 210.

heard about Randi. Four days earlier she’d seen the dog, tried to approach her, but Randi was really skittish, eventually running away. Tuesday, nothing. Wednesday, nothing. But Thursday would be the day. 

“I followed the dog to make sure where it went, and it went into the drain pipe,” said Odom, herself an adoring fur mom. 

Liz Martin, a Robins tech order librarian, had been in the loop about Randi. Having gotten off work earlier, when Odom called to let her know Randi was spotted, she immediately drove back.

Because the drainage pipe runs a few feet under a sidewalk, coaching the dog to come out wasn’t easy. But once a little water pressure was applied inside by fire rescuers, with Odom at one end and Martin on the other, the dog eventually sprinted out.

“Everything was perfect timing,” said Martin, who stressed the important role online networking played.

While dogs aren’t usually a call he gets when it comes to base wildlife critters, Robert Crumley with the base entomology shop was glad to help on scene.

“She was scared but not aggressive,” he said.

Once Martin called another rescue group volunteer, Randi was soon identified as the runaway hound from Fort Valley.

“It definitely was a group effort,” said Odom. “I’m so glad it all worked out.”  

*No federal endorsement of organizations intended.