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Firefighters Rescue Dog From Well

TIMES STAFF WRITER

With the victim weighing in at 200 pounds, the rescue wasn’t easy. But after more than two hours of struggle Monday in Malibu, firefighters managed to pull a stranded sheep dog out of a well to safety.

The dog, whose name was not immediately available, fell through a three-foot-wide opening into a water well along Decker Canyon Road. It was trying to stay afloat about 10 feet down when Los Angeles County firefighters got the call about 12:30 p.m.

Soon, four engine companies, one truck and the department’s fancy USR1 Urban Search and Rescue utility vehicle were on the scene.

Also standing by were paramedics, a hazardous-materials team and, of course, a veterinarian, according to department spokeswoman Clyde Taylor. She said the dog was pulled out of the well just before 3 p.m. by about 10 firefighters who attached a large noose around its body.

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The dog was unharmed, Taylor said. “It took awhile,” she added, “but I think he’s just glad to be out.”

Capt. Bill Hood said that although firefighters work just as hard at saving a dog as they would someone who walks on two legs, the rescue was quite unusual.

The regular crew at the station was on a training mission Monday. But luckily for the dog, another engine company from Ladera Heights was standing by.

Also, Hood said, “I don’t ever remember this happening before. Dogs get hit by cars and such, but never can I remember ever trying to rescue a dog that has fallen into a well or a hole.”

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“But, I mean, a dog is part of many people’s family. So it is pretty much like having one of your kids rescued and being brought back from a dangerous situation,” Hood said. “I don’t know if this family had children or not. But if the Fire Department had not been involved, these people might have tried to rescue the dog themselves and put themselves in danger.”


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