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This took place over the course of 1-1/2 hours.


There was a shep mix dog walking through rushing water along a barrier in the LA River near Vernon. The water was covering his paws in some areas. They were throwing ropes at him to go further south, but the barrier/ledge was under water in either direction and he wouldn't go that far. They had a guy on the overpass ready to rappel down.

The water started to get deeper so he walked further south under the overpass with water over his knees. They didn't get the guy down fast enough, but there was another guy even further south with a catch pole. Of course, the dog went away from him and they didn't have anyone on the other side. He got into deeper and deeper water and I kept thinking the water was going to sweep him away.

Then they brought the heli in and the noise and disturbed water from the props scared him over to the side, but the walls were way too steep for him to climb out and even if he got up the wall, there was a fence.

Then they brought the heli back in (with power lines really close) and dropped a guy in the water. He waded through the water and was able to quickly put a loop around the dog, but got bit in the process of trying to wrangle him. The dog continued to snap, but the guy, bless his heart, held onto that dog (I don't know how) and they hoisted them out and over to the overpass.

It was just heart wrenching.

I just saw him on the news again at SEACCA. He is scared, but warmed up and seems to be a nice dog - just terrified. The swift water rescue guy went to the hospital and is expected to recover.

They believe someone belongs to the dog (now named Vernon) as he appeared well cared for and fed. If not, he'll be available for adoption and many people have called to ask about adopting him.



www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local-beat/Raw_Video__Dramatic_Dog_Rescue_Los_Angeles.html
 

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That was amazing.
The poor pouch! Happy to see that it all turned out well.

Everyone's trying to get on TV in this town - even the dogs!
Now that Vernon the dog is a star I'm sure he'll find a good home if he needs one. :)
 

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Great video of a great rescue! Thumbs up for the rescuer for holding the pup even when he got bit.
 

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That was riveting live television (FOX News' Sheppard Smith ran with it live), I almost could not bear to watch. Friends all over the country e-mailed me about it. It's a small world we live in these days.

Kudos to the LA Fire Department and the individual firemen who went out of their way for this pup (and for dog-loving people everywhere who watched his saga).


http://apnews.myway.com/article/20100123/D9DD69UG0.html

[FONT=Verdana,Sans-serif]Joe St. Georges, a 25-year Los Angeles Fire Department veteran, said he received a "real bite in the thumb" but was otherwise feeling fine.

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[FONT=Verdana,Sans-serif] He said he had no hard feelings toward the dog.

"I didn't really have the time to establish any rapport with the dog," St. Georges told reporters after being released from County USC Medical Center. "He's cold, he's wet, he's scared, and then here's this stranger jumping on his back for all intents and purposes, and he did what dogs do."

Fire officials said the male dog, nicknamed Vernon after the Southern California town where he was found, was fine. He did not have a name tag or computer chip, said Sgt. Charles Miller of the Southeast Area Animal Control Authority in Downey.

The dog was quarantined to be monitored for rabies but "appears to be well-maintained and cared for," Miller said.


As to whether it was appropriate for the fire department to devote time and resources to the rescue:

[/FONT][FONT=Verdana,Sans-serif]
[/FONT][FONT=Verdana,Sans-serif]...fire officials were worried somebody might attempt to rescue the dog and put themselves in danger.

"We thought it was more prudent to send in people trained to take care of the dog," St. George said.

The dog will be quarantined for 10 days, unless the owner shows up with proof of rabies vaccination, Miller said. Then, the dog could be monitored at home. If the owner doesn't show up, officials will try to find the dog a new home.
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