Daring rescue worker saves dog from 90-foot cliff

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As anyone who’s ever brought Fido to the cottage knows, there are plenty of sticky situations a dog can get themselves into.

From digging up the neighbour’s garden and getting lost in the woods to encountering wildlife and swimming too far from shore, dog owners have to keep a close eye on their pooches in this kind of environment.

But one owner might never let her dog off the leash again after her black and white Labrador, Oreo, found herself stuck on a cliff high above Portuguese Beach in Sonoma, Cali.

While out for a walk earlier this month, Oreo somehow made her way about 40 feet down a 90-foot cliff before realizing that she couldn’t go down any farther and couldn’t turn around. Situated precariously on a sheer rock ledge 50 feet above the water, Oreo was stuck. If Oreo jumped, she likely would be injured or taken by the waves.

After efforts to coax the dog back up the cliff failed, local fire crews and the Sonoma Country Sheriff’s Department realized the only way to rescue the pooch would be by helicopter. 

To ensure the chopper wouldn’t frighten Oreo, Pilot Paul Bradley flew the helicopter over the cliff a couple of times to show the dog it was safe. Once the dog was calm enough, Bradley landed nearby and Deputy Henri Boustany attached himself to a 100-foot line, ready to be lowered.

While there have been cases where dogs in these situations have attacked their rescuers, Oreo was very happy to see Boustany when he joined her on the ledge. He managed to safely grab the dog and they were both raised up the cliff.

The owner, who was just visiting the area for the day, was extremely happy to see Oreo again.

It was a happy ending to what could have been a tragic tale.