Canine Saved by Airlift Rescue
Dog-tired pooch gets helicopter help during hike.
Have you ever been so doggone tired you can't take another step? While most of us have been there, sometimes, it's hard to imagine that our energetic four-legged friends could ever feel that way, but as one couple learned this past summer, it's a completely plausible scenario.
A California couple and their dog, Baxter, required an airlift rescue from the Angeles National Forest north of San Dimas after overestimating the dog's ability to walk and climb so many miles, reports Studio City Patch. The trio had hiked to the Bridge to Nowhere Trail, but realized that the pads of the lab-mix's feet were injured from the rough terrain, and he was in no shape to make the five-mile return trip. They thought he'd be up for the challenge since they regularly took him for one-mile hikes at home, but when it became clear that he was done hiking, they opted to stay with him rather than leave him behind to get help.
Even after the search team found the stranded group, the challenges were far from over. Rescuers had planned to carry Baxter out on a litter, but realized that between his 80 pound weight and the difficult trail -- several rescuers sustained injuries just getting to the trapped hikers -- carrying the pooch to safety wasn't a viable option. A helicopter was called in, but that, too, presented difficulties. Tired and sore as he was, Baxter wasn't about to allow himself to be airlifted to a loud, scary helicopter -- understandable, considering it sometimes takes a bit of convincing to get humans to do it.
Eventually, the team landed the helicopter nearby and coaxed Baxter inside. He and his family were flown back to the command post and sent home, safe, sound, but more than a little sore.
This story had a happy ending, but it's a good reminder that our dogs' boundless energy doesn't mean they're invincible. Dogs need to train for long distances and tough terrain, just like we do. And don't forget about the pet-friendly hiking gear!
Does your pet enjoy hiking? Have you ever had your pet become overtired while exercising? Tell us below!
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