After Hurricane Harvey ripped through Texas on Friday, many residents on the Gulf Coast were left trying to pick up and carry on with their lives after the storm. One of these residents was Otis, a German Shepherd mix dog, who was spotted walking the streets with a large bag of his own dog food in his mouth. An image of him went instantly viral on Facebook.

Hurricane Harvey causes chaos on the Gulf Coast of Texas

Hurricane Harvey at one point became a Category 4 storm, with winds reaching more than 130 miles per hour. Around 15 inches of rain was dumped on the Texas Gulf Coast area, causing considerable damage to the region.

Residents are expecting even more heavy rain in the coming days, making life extremely difficult for homeowners and their beloved pets.

Neighbor spots the resourceful dog, food in mouth

One of the residents affected in the area is Tiele Dockens, who was checking on properties belonging to family and friends in the town of Sinton. Along her way, she spotted Otis, the German Shepherd/golden retriever mix dog, walking the streets with the bag of his dog food firmly in his jaws.

Dockens told the Huffington Post that she was checking damage to properties in the area after Hurricane Harvey and that many people were in their yards and on the streets, trying to clear up the trees, branches, and debris that had fallen during the storm.

She figured Otis was a stray who was also in survival mode and went on to post his image to Facebook using the hashtag #refugee. The image soon went viral, with more than 24,000 shares at the time of writing. Many Facebook users went on to comment on how resourceful the dog was, saying it had to be a Texan trait. Others joked that the mutt was a looter.

Otis back home, safe and sound

It turns out Otis wasn't a stray but was in the care of his owner’s grandfather when the storm hit. 65-year-old Salvador Segovia had placed the dog in a screened-in back porch of his Sinton home, while he was caring for Otis on behalf of his five-year-old grandson, Carter, whose family had left town over the flooding.

However, when Segovia went to check on Otis on Friday night, the dog wasn’t there. He also found the dog’s bag of food had gone missing.

Speaking to, Segovia said he kept yelling the dog’s name, but couldn’t find him. On Saturday morning Segovia was driving around the neighborhood searching for the missing dog when a neighbor flagged him down, saying they had seen Otis, strolling in the streets with a bag of dog food in his mouth. He said he was eventually able to find the dog and take him safely home.

Segovia added that Otis is a pretty special dog and has been of great comfort to his grandson Carter, who suffers from asthma and seizures. Locally, the dog is also something of a celebrity, with Segovia saying Otis can visit Dairy Queen and will always get a free hamburger. He added that the mutt is also the only town dog who is allowed to lie outside the county court house. Segovia stressed that Otis is not a stray dog – he’s a very good dog.

Meanwhile, animal shelters and rescue groups are doing everything they can for animals lost or misplaced by the storm in the Gulf Coast area. Anyone who has lost the pet can get in touch with Dallas Animal Services, the SPCA of Texas, San Antonio Humane Society and Austin Pets Alive.