A Mid-South truck driver says he's alive because his best friend saved his life. His best friend, Trucker, is his dog.
William Arnold has been a truck driver for 10 years. He found the dog three years ago, alone and abandoned at a truck stop in Olive Branch, "I just told him c'mon let's get in the truck."
They've been together ever since. Riding, sleeping and seeing the country.
Arnold adds, "he loves to stop in the rest areas, see the sites."
Recently, Arnold was on a 1500 mile trip with his dog from Memphis to Oregon.
He almost didn't make it. During the recent trip, something went terribly wrong. Arnold says that he was tired, fatigued, nauseated.
"Trucker was acting real strange. He was barking, clawing at the air vents," says Arnold.
Arnold was in Wyoming. He decided to pull over and take a nap in the back of the truck and Trucker was trying to wake him up.
"He's pulling on my left arm and pulled me halfway out of the bunk barking, going crazy going nuts," says Arnold.
That's when Arnold took a deep breath and knew right away, "tasted the exhaust fumes it was a burning sensation in my nose and throat," explains Arnold.
Arnold and Trucker had carbon monoxide poisioning. It was leaking through the air vents.
Arnold says the dog knew something was wrong and tried to warn him. Arnold called 911. He was given oxygen and Trucker was taken to the vet.
"It ate up the lining of his respiratory system it manifested itself in sores and scabs all over his skin," says Arnold.
After a round of painkillers and antibiotics, Trucker was feeling better. Arnold feels lucky to be alive, "I really think about the day I found him. What if I would have walked away, would I be alive today," says an emotional Arnold.
It's a story about a man saving a dog's life and it brings a whole new meaning to man's best friend.
Paramedics in Wyoming says if Arnold had kept sleeping in the truck, he might have never woken up.