From the horror of the warehouse blasts in China’s port city of Tianjin comes a tale of survival that has bewitched Chinese social media users and become a symbol of hope amid the relentless flow of dark news and images.
More than 72 hours after explosions devastated parts of the city, search and rescue teams came across a mongrel puppy at the blast site.
It is not known where the puppy came from or if it had an owner. But Chinese soldiers who examined the dog said it was “miraculously unscathed”.
It is not clear whether the dog survived the explosions or wandered into the area after the blasts, but the images provided a rare glimmer of good news for Chinese netizens.
“It’s a miracle that the puppy managed to survive such horrific blasts. I hope it will find a good home,” said Weibo user Zun Bao.
Another user shared the puppy’s story on his micro-blogging account and said: “This is Shenghua [which translates to ‘Biochemistry’ in Chinese] – he was rescued by a chemical specialist team in Tianjin. The puppy wouldn’t even leave its rescuers, such loyalty.”
Shenghua’s heart-warming rescue story attracted tens of thousands of comments and likes on Weibo, Facebook and Wechat.
“We have been reading so many stories of death and loss, especially our young firefighters. So I am glad to hear how a tiny puppy has become a story of strength and kindness in China today,” said Weibo user Yang Yi Chang.
“This is more than just any old animal story – Reading it among all the doom and gloom of Tianjin [coverage] literally lifted my spirits,” remarked another.
Other users agreed and some even began expressing their hopes that Shenghua would find a new home.
Shenghua is still with rescue workers at the blast site.