One Argentinian dog has spent the past six years proving he’s a man’s best friend, even though that man is dead.
Capitán, a mutt who is some parts German Shepard, disappeared from his home in the small town of Villa Carlos Paz in the center of Argentina following the death of his owner, Miguel Guzmán, in March of 2006.
For days, nobody in Guzmán’s family noticed the absence of the dog, a surprise gift the man had given his young son, Damián, in the middle of 2005.
That was, until the family visited Miguel’s grave at a municipal cemetery.
“Damián started to shout that it was Capitán and the dog came toward us barking, as if he were crying,” Guzmán’s wife, Verónica Moreno, told La Voz del Interior, a large Spanish-language newspaper published in the Argentinian province of Córdoba.
Even though the family called to the dog, he stayed by his master’s grave.
This surprised them: Miguel had passed away in a hospital in the city and his body was taken to a funeral home far away from their residence. None of the family members recalled the dog following them to the cemetery before.
“The next Sunday we went to visit Miguel’s grave and the dog was there. This time he followed us when we returned, because we had walked. He stayed with us at home for a while but later went back to the cemetery,” Verónica said.
He has made that cemetery his home for the past six years.
Verónica told La Voz that she didn’t really like the dog when he was living with her. Even when he was brought home as a gift, the woman thought he would cause too much extra housework.
But now that she’s seen the dog stand so loyally by her husband’s grave, she says she views the mutt more sympathetically.
On top of all this, the municipal cemetery’s director, Héctor Baccega, says the dog has a special sense for Miguel and a very particular schedule.
The first time Baccega saw the dog, he arrived at the cemetery alone. The dog then did a couple of laps around the place before finding his master’s grave — all on his own.
“And that’s not all,” Baccega said. “Every day, at six in the evening, he lies in the front of (Miguel’s) grave.”
And even though the dog’s other owner, 13-year-old Damián, fondly remembers receiving Capitán as a puppy when he was a kid, he told the paper he is fine with Capitán’s new living arrangements.
“If he wants to stay there, it’s fine that he remains: he’s taking care of my dad,” he said.