In yet another instance of dogs living up to their reputation of being “man’s best friend”, a year-old pup saved his owner’s life by showing police the ditch he had fallen into during a walk in Ireland.
62-year-old Pat Brennan was out with his canine friend Jack for a nightly walk when he “fell down a ditch on a bog road just outside Portarlington on the Laois-Offaly border and disappeared into the dark undergrowth below,” the Irish Independent reported.
Jack stayed on the road close, helping police identify the man’s location.
"I'm a bit of an astronomy geek, and I had noticed a planet beside the moon while out walking, and I was looking up, wondering which one it was," Pat was quoted as saying.
"Jack was scratching around beside me, and when I went to move on again he kind of jerked the lead and knocked me off balance.
"I've had a stroke in the past so my balance isn't great, and I ended up falling sideways down the bank and out of view. I knew there was no way I could get out, and I also feared that Jack might just run off, because he's only a pup."
Pat got through to 999 but realised he had another problem.
"When you ring the emergency services you get through to a central control station, probably in Dublin. You don't get through to anyone locally," he said.
"So I had to tell them I was somewhere on the bog road in Portarlington, and they had to pass the message on to the local gardaí."
By the time, a local garda unit was dispatched to try and find Pat, it was dark and the man was lying injured at the bottom of the bank.
"After about 10 minutes I could hear a car going by, but there was no way for me to alert them or draw their attention to me. But then when they spotted Jack they knew I must be nearby," Pat explained.
"They were able to come to my aid because they spotted Jack whimpering on the road, and they called an ambulance to check me over," he added.
"I wasn't too badly hurt, just a few cuts and bruises, and I was able to go home after being checked."
“Even when an ambulance arrived Jack wouldn’t rest unless he could see him!” the police wrote on Twitter along with a picture that shows the dog keeping a watchful eye on his owner.
Man's best friend.Elderly man out walking his dog last night near Portarlington fell into the ditch & couldn’t get out. Jack the Dog stayed by his side & showed Gardaí where he was. Even when ambulance arrived Jack wouldn’t rest unless he could see him! Owner and Jack home now pic.twitter.com/QqDNpB3CKr— Garda Info (@gardainfo) June 18, 2019
Jack is now getting special treatment at home by Pat and his wife Melanie.
"Jack had followed me home from the shops one day about six months ago, and we fell in love with him. He hadn't been chipped but we had to bring him to the local dog pound in case someone claimed him," said Melanie.
"When nobody came for him, we got Jack as a rescue dog, and now he has repaid that favour by doing a bit of rescuing himself," said Melanie, patting Jack and getting ready for a walk.