A man from Michigan is “eternally grateful” to his pet dog as he recover from a near-death experience thanks to the perseverance and loyalty of his dog.

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The man, known as Bob, was watching football with his dog Kelsey. During a commercial break, Bob went outside with just long jons, slippers and shirts to quickly grab some wood for his fireplace. However, Bob slipped in the snow and broke his neck, which resulted to paralysis.

Lying in the snowbed with nothing but light clothes, Bob screamed for help. However, it was 10:30 pm in New Year’s Eve and his nearest neighbor is about a quarter mile away. Luckily, Kelsey heard his screams and came to his side.

“She kept barking for help but never left my side,” shared Bob, in a report from WPBN. “She kept me warm and alert. I knew I had to persevere through this and that it was my choice to stay alive.”

Bob remained lying paralyzed in the snow for next 19 hours. With the temperature dropping to as low as 24 degrees, Kelsey kept Bob warm and awake by lying on top of him and licking his hands and face.

After being unable to move for nearly 20 hours, Bob loss his consciousness. As Bob’s consciousness fades away, Kelsey let out a screeching howl that alerted the neighbor. Bob was finally found at 6.30pm at New Year’s Day.

Bob was quickly rushed in the hospital. He was hypothermic, with a core body temperature under 70 degrees Fahrenheit, in atrial fibrillation, and had two disc herniations that caused his acute paraplegia, or paralysis. Despite all his injuries, Bob was surprised that he did not developed frost bite.

Doctors at the McLaren Northern Michigan, led by Neurosurgeon Chaim Colen, M.D. immediately took Bob in the operating room for decompression of his spinal cord and stabilization.

Bob will need intense physical and occupational therapy to regain strength and function.