Peeka, a Lhasa Apso and Poodle mix, was purchased by her owner Mariel Anderson when the young woman turned 20. Peeka means "little one" in Norwegian and was also Mariel's nickname as a child.
One cold February day, Peeka began to bark furiously and paw at the rear door of the Anderson's Saskatoon, Saskatchewan home. Not sure why the dog was in such a state, Mariel's father, Ed Anderson, opened the door and discovered a blanket bundle on the back porch. Ed thought it was either a kitten or a discarded blanket, but when Peeka continued to bark and claw at the blanket, Ed heard a small cry. When he opened the blanket, he discovered that there was a baby inside the blanket.
Ed immediately brought the baby inside and called for his wife Lee to assist. Lee is a registered nurse and quickly determined that the baby was only a few hours old. The infant's hands were like ice and she was red and wrinkled from the frigid temperatures. Once at the hospital, the newborn was treated for hypothermia in the neonatal intensive care unit. She has been placed with the Department of Community Resources in foster care.
Mariel is convinced that had Peeka not barked and alerted the Anderson's to the bundle, the baby would not have survived the -29C temperature. "If it wasn't for Peeka, there could have been a tragic outcome that day," says Ed. "It was bitterly cold outside and it was because of her persistence that we went out fairly soon to check on what the problem was." For her perseverance, Peeka has been inducted into the Purina Animal Hall of Fame, which for over 40 years has recognized hero animals from across the country.