A full-scale rescue was put on for a border collie that escaped its yard in Fairfield and made its way to King George Terrace on Nov. 1.
The dog, which was later discovered to be pregnant, was reported to Victoria Animal Control Services as running along Beach Drive and onto the Victoria Golf Course. An animal control officer spotted the dog and followed her on foot, losing sight of the frightened animal in the 900-block of Beach Drive just after noon.
A search was conducted through several waterfront properties and the dog was located about 20 minutes later clinging to a ledge on the side of a vertical rock face. The dog had tried to jump across a narrow ravine and landed on the ledge half way down to the water.
Due to the steep and slippery terrain animal control officers were unable to reach the dog and called the Oak Bay Fire Department for assistance.
“We took a number of these border collie mixes from a man – a recluse really – who lives in the interior,” said Penny Stone, of the Victoria Humane Society. “The dogs are not used to being around anyone, they’re used to being with one man and 40 or 50 other dogs.”
The Oak Bay Fire Department arrived and set up a rope rescue system using nearby trees so a firefighter could be lowered down to the dog. Oak Bay Sea Rescue was also called to attend the scene in the event the dog jumped into the ocean.
“It was a great rescue,” said Stone. “I can’t thank the Oak Bay Fire Department and the Sea Rescue enough for everything they did.”
When all services were in place Oak Bay firefighter Kyle Beaumont was lowered approximately 20 feet to the dog.
Wearing bite-proof gloves borrowed from Animal Control, Beaumont was able to befriend the stressed dog. He fastened a rope onto its harness and the dog was secured into a soft animal stretcher provided by Animal Control. Other firefighters then provided the muscle power to bring the firefighter and dog up and out of the narrow ravine.
“Honestly I thought they’d never find her let alone rescue her like that. It was just amazing,” said Stone.
Beaumont called Stone later to check on Mopsie, who had escaped her foster home by digging under a fence.
“He did ask about adopting the puppy – it was so sweet when he called – I said, ‘you’ve got to be kidding. You saved our dog’s life of course you can adopt the puppy.’”