Michael Crocker and 4-month-old yellow Lab mix Bella were driving home to California from his college in Alabama in May. Crocker was exhausted by the time they reached Arizona, but he wanted to keep going and get home.
"We get to Flagstaff and I fell asleep behind the wheel," Crocker said.
That's when his car veered off the road, hit a sign and rolled back onto the road.
When Crocker regained consciousness, he was in a daze and badly injured.
A college friend was driving behind him and saw the horrific scene unfold. When he went to Crocker's aid, Bella was nowhere to be found, and Crocker "started freaking out about her."
First responders couldn't find Bella. Flyers were posted about her, but as the days turned into weeks, hope began to stretch thin.
Then, 13 days later, little Bella was rescued from the Arizona desert.
Volunteers from a local rescue group found her. Her leash had become tied around a bush, and she was without food or water.
Now, after being reunited with Crocker, the two won't leave each other's sides.
"I definitely want to make her feel like she'll never have to spend a night alone again," Crocker said.