Tornado survivor searches for his dog

People weren’t the only ones affected by Tuesday’s storm. Pets were too. Many people found their animals, but we’ve gotten emails from some who are still looking.

Matt James ran for this garage when he saw, with no warning, Tuesday’s tornado coming over the hill toward his home. Afterward, his belongings were left in pieces.

James and his girlfriend, Brie Keys, are looking for their dog, Ruger.

"That’s the only thing I wish I had, the only thing I can’t find. Nothing else matters," said James.

James held Ruger as the tornado tore through the garage. Ruger was tied to a post in the corner, the two hid between the back tire of James’ truck and a wall, hoping for the best.

"The whole building flipped into the air, and he was tied to the 6 by 6. And it ripped him out of my arms," James said.

James had injuries, but now it’s Ruger he’s worried about. He even found the post the dog was tied to, but there was no sign of his dog.

"We think he got away. We hope he got away, so please look for him," Keyes said.

The couple now staying at Keye’s home in Murray, and they hope to find their loyal friend, or at least some closure. 

Ruger is a 2-year-old neutered male Blue Heeler. Keyes describes his markings as distinct and says he has a docked tail. He had an orange Remington collar on him with his rabies tag and microchip ID:900164000805421. The couple asks you to share their posts online about Ruger. You can also email the family at

James set up a Facebook page for the public.  Search "Help Find Ruger."  You can also call 740-975-6404 or 740-973-6850 if you think you’ve spotted Ruger.

If you’re missing a pet or think you’ve found one, call the Mayfield-Graves County Animal Shelter to notify workers. 

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