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Scout escaped the animal shelter, climbed two high fences, crossed a busy road at night, slid in the automatic doors of a nearby nursing home, found a couch in the lobby, curled up, and slept there all night. Three times.

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Twice, the morning nurse called the animal control and twice, the sheriff came and took him back to the shelter down the road, according to the Detroit Free Press. The third time, the staff saw that the Meadow Brook Medical Care Center was where he had chosen to be. Many of the seniors there were in bad shape — dementia, terminal illnesses, or nowhere else to go because nobody wanted to take care of them. Maybe Scout, who had been named by the people at the shelter, could relate. Nobody wanted him. He had clearly been abused. He was scared, loud noises made him tremble, and he had some bbs or birdshot in his jaw, a healed injury from a time when somebody shot him. And even after that kind of mistreatment, he was gentle.

Maybe Scout could somehow sense people who could use a helping hand — or paw, in his case.

‘Outward signs’

The nursing home administrator, Marna Robinson, sensed that they’d been chosen by a dog who wanted to stay right where he was.

“I’m a person who looks at outward signs, and if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be,” Robinson, 57, told the Free Press. “He did that one time, two times, three times, and obviously that’s something that you should pay attention to. And I asked the staff, ‘Well, he wants to be here. Would anybody like to have a dog?’”

Everybody did. So Scout became everybody’s dog.

A servant’s heart

The residents loved him right off. He was a good boy. The nurses thought having a dog around may have reminded them of home.

Especially a dog who made rounds, just as the nurses did, walking the hall, checking in on some of his favorite residents. He taught himself how to open their doors by jumping up and pulling the handle with his paw. He always went to see the ones who kept dog biscuits in their walkers for him. Sometimes, he had been fed so much, he wasn’t hungry. So he’d hide the biscuits in a chair so he could come back later and have a snack.

He had an instinct for people who needed the most help. Those who were sick, those who were just feeling bad or sad, or those who were actively dying. He checked in on them several times a day. Sometimes the nurses had to keep him from climbing into bed with them. He wanted to help, the Free Press said. Scout had a servant’s heart — like the nurses who adopted him, and who seemed to be his role models.

Good attracts good

Scout first came to the nursing home in 2017 — he’s been a fixture ever since. Last January, because he’d done so much for the residents, the staff organized Scout’s House Paws for the Pantry Fundraiser to raise money, food, treats, toys, and anything else a stray animal might need for the animal shelter he had escaped so long ago, the Capital Journal reported.

They made a Facebook page about Scout’s story and the fundraiser. The comments poured in. Here’s one from a friend called Vicki Wynkoop Moses-McWatters, who said, “Scout appeared like an angel. God knew what he was doing.”

The story started to get out. Some other news outlets started writing about his story

Sometimes, good attracts good.

Hundreds of dollars and gifts poured in from strangers who heard how he got there. Somebody even came by the nursing home just to meet this good dog they read about, the Free Press reported.

In February, Scout was named “Resident of the Month,” by the staff.

“We woof you!” said the poster announcing the honor, written by the staff. “Thank you for adopting us!