A dog owner in Wichita, Kan., thought he had lost his beloved Taz forever when the 6-year-old mutt disappeared in a river during a sudden storm. After two and a half hours of searching, rescue firefighters also believed the dog was gone until someone spotted a glimpse of a wet snout peeking through the concrete, and the 100-pound Lab mix was remarkably pulled out alive.
The dog’s owner, John Huy, told the Wichita Eagle that Taz was so frightened by a clap of thunder on their walk that he ran off and jumped straight into the creek, which flows underneath a bridge. The dog hid on a ledge under a concrete embankment but got trapped in a small air pocket by the rising river waters.
Taz’s owner and a bystander jumped in to try to save the dog. Firefighters arrived at the scene, expecting to rescue two men, but they swiftly jumped into action for Taz, searching for an opening in the embankment and attempting to break through the concrete with sledgehammers.
The Wichita Fire Department Heavy Rescue Team was just about to give a news conference, calling off the search, ABC News affiliate KAKE reported, when a firefighter saw the dog’s nose and sprung into action.
“We were going to keep looking until we knew there was no hope for the dog,” Wichita Fire Captain John Wells told KAKE. “We thought we’d come to that point but lo and behold he was still alive poking his nose out of our last hole.”
Rescuers used power saws to cut a hole in the concrete to pull out the trapped Taz.
Taz is back home with his owner today, safe and sound.
“I just thank these guys so much for their effort and their success,” Huy told KAKE. “They went the extra mile.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.