Israeli Teen Hostage Recalls How Her Adorable Pup Was ‘Moral Support’ in Gaza

Ronen Zvulun/Reuters
Ronen Zvulun/Reuters

A 17-year-old Israeli hostage released on Nov. 28 by Hamas during the temporary ceasefire said on Tuesday that her Shih Tzu helped her get through captivity, according to Reuters. “Luckily for me, Bella is unlike all the other small dogs that I personally know; she is rather quiet, unless when she’s playing or mad, and so they didn’t notice her,” Mia Leimberg told the news agency. Leimberg’s dad said that Hamas militants didn’t realize his daughter was carrying Bella until she was taken to Gaza and that, according to CBS News, they allowed her to keep the pet in a birdcage. Although the family gave the dog their leftover food, Leimberg explained, “She kept me busy. She was moral support, even though she didn’t want to be.” Her father said, “She was very determined to bring the dog back, and one of the expressions that she has now, about the dog, is ‘I love you to Gaza and back’.”

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