Dog walkers urged to steer clear of cliffs after collie plunges 125ft

by Mark James on January 15, 2011

Dorset coastguards have issued a warning to people out walking their dogs to keep them safely on a lead whilst walking along cliffs, and to not try and affect any rescue if their pet falls over the edge.

Emergency services were called to cliffs at Durdle Door, near Lulworth cove, after a walker found himself in trouble when he tried to rescue his dog which had fallen over the cliff edge.

The dog, a 14 year old collie called Jack, plunged 125 ft., prompting a rescue attempt by his owner, a 33 year old man from Devon who was visiting the attraction. However, he found himself unable to negotiate the cliff face, which towers above Man o’ War Bay, and was left clinging to it for dear life. Luckily, a call to the emergency services was made, resulting in coastguard and helicopter teams being scrambled to airlift him back to the cliff top, and attend to his pet.

The Portland Coastguard watch manager, Bruce Lack, said:

“[The owner] put his own life in danger in a misguided attempt to rescue his dog.”

“The dog was rushed off to a vet by the coastguard where he was checked over.”

“The dog is OK and both he and his owner should survive their ordeal.”

“We always advise owners to keep their dogs on leads when walking the cliff paths and never to put one’s own life in danger in an attempt to rescue a beloved family pet.”

There are a number of reported incidents of dogs falling over cliffs in the UK, so perhaps it’s a good idea to stay well clear of any cliff edges if you’re walking your dog.

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