Saskatchewan

No fowl ending: Pet goose escapes clutches of fox to waddle back to Moose Jaw home

Steve the goose went missing from his family's home southwest of Moose Jaw, but somehow found his way back after being seen with a fox.

Steve's owners thought he was a goner - but the goose came back, the very next day

Steve the goose went missing from his acreage southwest of Moose Jaw this past week, with his owners saying they were devastated after a report that a fox had gotten him. Somehow, he's made his way home. (Carla Shymko/Facebook)

When Carla Shymko is reading, her pet Steve will put his head in her lap. When she mows the lawn, he'll follow her back and forth. 

"He's literally just like a dog. He used to fight my rottweiler for attention," she said of the goose that her children brought home from a bird sanctuary years ago, along with his mate Lulu. 

"He picked me. I was the one that didn't want them and he attached himself to me."

Lulu died four years ago, but Steve has lasted the long run, making a cozy little life for himself on Shymko's acreage southwest of Moose Jaw.  

Steve the goose checks out a building project. (Submitted by Carla Shymko)

But this past week, when Shymko found Steve had somehow gotten out of his enclosure, she and her family began panicking. 

"My daughter was really upset," she said, explaining that her daughter and her friends had been in the enclosure on Monday, before he went missing. "She thought she may have left the gate open — she was beside herself."

Listen to the story of Steve the goose's journey home on The Morning Edition:

When a Moose Jaw family's pet goose was missing from its pen, with just a few feathers and a fox-sized hole left behind, they feared the worst. But the next day, Steve was back. A story that will give you goosebumps. 8:28

Clues began to point to a different suspect.

Shymko posted about the missing goose on Facebook, willing to risk being laughed at about her attachment to a bird. Instead, messages of support and offers to help came pouring in. 

Unfortunately, one neighbour said they had seen a fox dragging a goose down the road. A hole under the enclosure seemed to be further evidence that a not-so fantastic fox had gotten into the proverbial hen house and absconded with Steve. 

"We were just devastated," Shymko said.

Shymko and her family were trying to make peace with the ugly end to their goose chase when, on Wednesday morning, she heard a pecking at her back glass doors. 

To their immense surprise, they found Steve. He was filthy, obviously tired and had a little mark of blood on his leg — but he was alive, miraculously.

"He was so excited to see me. He started coming over, and he fell over," she said, the relief clear in her voice.

Steve returned home safely on Wednesday morning. (Submitted by Carla Shymko)

She still can't work out how Steve escaped, given that he can't fly. Her only guess is "he gave that fox a run for his money."

The response on Facebook has been an outpouring of admiration for Steve and support for his family, something Shymko describes as heart-warming.  

"It's like losing a puppy and getting a puppy back — there's no difference really. It was pretty amazing."

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