Epic rescue effort to free terrified puppy from drain

2013-11-05 00:00

A RESCUE effort fit for a human disaster saved a terrified puppy yesterday, after it hid from fireworks in an underground drain.

In a rescue featuring both fire fighters and SPCA officials, a hole was excavated and a concrete pipe severed in Bisley to free the tiny, two-month-old Jack Russell pup, “Roxy”.

Local resident Alma Robert said she contacted the fire department after hearing cries from a drain at the base of a neighbourhood wall.

“My neighbour was not at home,” said Robert. “The puppy was crying. I looked over the fence and I could not see it, but the cry worried me. I sent my son over the fence to inspect what was happening.”

Robyn Holmes, an inspector with the SPCA, said: “When we got to the house we found that it was in a pipe and we assume that it got scared by fire crackers. It went into a narrow pipe. It’s truly a relief that we got the puppy out alive.”

Roxy’s owner is local public prosecutor Thulani Bhengu, who said he was distraught to learn of the dog’s plight. He said the pup had been a gift from his brother.

Hours after the elaborate rescue, a relieved Bengu said: “I am happy that my puppy is safe. Roxy is back home after he was taken to the vet [and] after all the hard work from the fire department and SPCA”.

SPCA manager Alistair Sinclair told The Witness that the organisation had collected more than 20 dogs yesterday afternoon alone.

Sinclair said fireworks used for November celebrations including Diwali had triggered a spate of runaways.

“It’s still too early for us to give numbers as many more animals may still be found to be missing, but so far we have collected 22 dogs and 13 cats [missing due to] fire crackers,” said Sinclair.

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