Given this dog’s situation — dumped inside a plastic bag at a recycling plant that processes 400 tons of debris a day, loaded by bulldozer onto a large conveyor belt, and on her way to a chute that would have dropped her 20 feet into a landfill — you might think nothing short of a miracle would save her.
While there may have been some of that involved, the three-month-old, five-pound poodle puppy has some alert workers to thank as well.
Just yards from the chute, one recycling worker noticed the bag moving. He slammed on the conveyer belt’s emergency brake as another worker climbed onto the belt to remove the dog.
Since named Gem, the dog, rescued — and we do mean rescued — the Friday before Christmas, is recovering from her injuries.
“It’s difficult to imagine how the dog survived this ordeal,” said Robert Reed, a spokesman for Recology, a recycling program in San Francisco that sorts through heavy debris from construction projects, such as concrete, metal and lumber. ”Nothing like this has happened before.”
Reed said the dog was likely thrown, inside the bag, into a bin for construction material, picked up by a garbage truck and hauled to the dump. Once in the dump, the dog likely had large amounts of debris dumped atop her, only to be later scooped up by a bulldozer and end up on the conveyor belt.
While riding along the conveyor belt, Gem went through a shaking process, aimed at removing excess dirt from the debris, and she was yards from passing into the chute when workers stationed along the conveyor belt noticed her.
“I was on the line working on the conveyor belt and there was a black trash bag coming down the line,” Gregory Foster told ABC News. “It had a hole in it and I could see it moving.”
After he activated the belt’s emergency brake, another co-worker climbed up on the belt and pulled the dog — wet, bloody and shaking – out of the bag.
The San Francisco Department of Animal Care and Control was called, and Gem is now in its care.
“We’re getting a lot of people calling, wanting to adopt her, foster, and offer donations for her care,” a spokesperson said. The agency received more than 100 telephone calls inquiring about the dog in three hours.
Many remain mystified how the dog survived what she did.
“It’s a miracle, it’s a Christmas miracle. That’s what it is,” Pena said.
But we’d give some of the credit to assembly line workers who managed, amid the monotony of their jobs, to stay alert.
And we’d give at least an equal amount to Gem, one plucky little dog.
(Top photo, CBS News; bottom photo, Arturo Pena)
Posted by John Woestendiek December 27th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoption, alert, animals, animnal care and control, assembly line, bin, bulldozer, christmas miracle, conveyor belt, dog, dogs, dump, dumped, gem, landfill, miracle, pets, plant, poodle, puppy, recology, recycle, recycling, rescue, rescued, rescues, san francisco, saved, shelters, trash, workers
Willis belonged to Karen Martin, of Portsmouth, Va. Four days before Christmas last year, she went out to her back yard to find him gone. After a year of posting fliers and searching, she’d all but given up hope of finding him.
Little did she know, he was hundreds of miles from home, and had a date with death, metro columnist Courtland Milloy of the Washington Post reported last week.
Picked up by animal control officers in Charles County more than a month ago, Willis had been taken to the Tri County Animal Shelter in Hughesville, Md. Shelter workers scanned Willis for an identification chip, but, though he had one, it was not detected. Shelter workers put a photograph of the 7-year-old dog on the facility’s “at-risk” list, meaning euthanasia was ahead.
The at-risk list, including a photo of each dog, is e-mailed to animal rescue groups and other dog lovers around the country in hopes that someone might be willing to adopt the animals listed before they are euthanized.
Terry Walker, an office manager for a veterinary hospital in Calvert County, was one of those who received it and recognized the dog pictured as a Clumber spaniel.
After an Internet search, Walker found an organization called Clumber Spaniel Rescue of America, and forwarded the dog’s photograph to the three contacts whose names were listed.
One of them ended up in the spam folder of Sally Day, of Washington Crossing, Pa. — a friend of Willis’ owner, Karen Martin.
She said she was deleting her spam when something told her to open this one.
“A voice said, ‘Open it,’ and the hair stood up on the back of my neck,” Day recalled. “The e-mail was from a stranger, and there was a photograph attached. I instantly thought I recognized the dog. I said, ‘Oh, my God, that’s Karen’s boy.’ ”
Martin called her friend Day, then e-mailed her the photo, and Willis is back home now — a bit the worse for wear from his journey of more than 200 miles. He had an injured eye, a respiratory infection and a skin allergy that had resulted in scratching off patches of hair.
Martin, who now lives in Williamsburg, said she expected this Christmas to be a lot more joyful than last year’s.
(Photo: By Jay Paul / from the Washington Post)
Posted by John Woestendiek December 26th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: at risk, charles county, christmas, clumber, clumber spaniel rescue, dog, internet, karen martin, list, lost, maryland, microchips, miracle, missing, portsmouth, rescue, shelter, spaniel, tri county animal shelter, washington post, willis
Through the month of December, Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter (BARCS) has been holding a bake sale on 34th Street, an area of Baltimore known for its over-the-top display of Christmas lights.
In addition to raising money for the shelter, BARCS is using the opportunity to educate the public about the shelter and about pit bulls – and how, despite the stereotypes, they aren’t innately evil. Generally, when a pit bull turns bad, it’s a human who has turned him that way.
As if to prove that point — that our problem is not bad dogs, it’s bad humans – a particularly heartless member of the latter species approached the BARCS booth last night, asked a BARCS volunteer if the money was being raised for charity, then ran off with the donation box.
A BARCS staff person chased the thief down the street, and he was eventually caught by another man and an off-duty firefighter. When police arrived, the box of donations was recovered and the suspect was arrested.
Meanwhile, back at the BARCS booth, 34th Street residents and citizens there to enjoy the lights came forward in droves, offering assistance and donations to replace those that had been stolen.
“Yes, we DO believe in Santa Claus!” BARCS said in a press release yesterday.
BARCS will be selling baked goods on 34th Street from 7 to 9 p.m. every night through December 31.
Posted by John Woestendiek December 16th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 34th street, animals, baltimore, baltimore animal rescue & care shelter, barcs, charity, christmas, christmas lights, crime, dogs, donations, evil, good, maryland, miracle, news, pets, pit bull, pit bulls, pitbull, rescues, santa claus, shelters, steals, stolen, theft, thief
Baltic, the Polish dog rescued from an ice floe in the Baltic Sea, is back at sea — this time wearing a life jacket and riding aboard the ship that saved him.
The Associated Press reports that Baltic embarked Wednesday on a three-day mission alongside his new owner Adam Buczynski, the seaman who pulled him to safety from an ice sheet in the Baltic Sea last month.
Buczynski said the dog seemed stressed by the commotion of preparing for the trip.
Ewa Bardziej-Krzyzankowska, spokeswoman for the Sea Fisheries Institute in Gdynia, co-owner of the ship, said the crew had anti-nausea pills for Baltic in case he gets seasick on the journey, whose purpose is to collect samples of fish and sea plants for an aquarium in Gdynia.
Bardziej-Krzyzankowska said Baltic quickly learned that he was to only use one spot on an outdoor deck to go the bathroom, one which the crew hoses down regularly. Baltic resisted a bath after his rescue, she reported, leading Buczynski to take the dog into his arms and take a shower with him.
Buczynski and other crew members spotted the dog Jan. 25 floating 15 miles from land. Baltic was first seen two days earlier on the Vistula River, 60 miles inland, drifting on ice past the city of Grudziadz, where firefighters tried but failed to save him.
(Photo: Krzysztof Mystkowski/Associated Press)
Posted by John Woestendiek February 10th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adam buczynski, amazing, animals, back to sea, baltic, baltic sea, crew, dog, fear, floating, floe, gdynia, ice, ice sheet, miracle, mission, pets, polish, rescued, sea, sea fisheries institute, seaman, trip, vistula river
One hundred and twenty-seven human lives were lost, but a dog miraculously survived a massive bombing in Baghdad Tuesday – even though the building she was chained to collapsed.
The dog was first spotted chained to a roof railing after the Tuesday bombing, standing on a wall ledge over the collapsed home.
The owner of the dog, Farouq Omar Muhei, returned to his destroyed home and was reunited with the ginger-colored mutt today, the Associated Press reported.
“Lots of neighbors thought I was dead,” he said after his dog, Liza, was carried down to the street.
Officials initially said Muhei and his family were among the victims. But, to the surprise of neighbors, already marveling over the dog’s survival, he returned with his 14-year-old son, Omar, after being treated for cuts and other injuries. They were the only family members home at the time of the attack.
Only a few portions of the home remained standing — including one section of the roof where Liza was chained. The dog’s water bucket was by her side, but was empty when Muhei’s brother, Fuad, climbed over the rubble to unchain the dog. The dog, waiting calmly, yawned as Fuad approached.
Once carried down to the street and reunited with Muhei, 46, the dog — who he purchased as a puppy six years ago in Baghdad’s main pet market –shook with joy and lapped water from a puddle, according to the AP report.
“After we crawled out of the rubble of our home, I said to my son, ‘the dog is dead’,” said Muhei, who sells candy and small items in the local market. “But my son said, ‘No, I saw her.’ I came back today to rescue my dog.”
Posted by John Woestendiek December 9th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: baghdad, bombing, chained, collapsed, dog, family, farouq omar muhei, home, iraq, killed 127, ledge, leveled, liza, miracle, reclaimed, rescued, reunion, reunited, roof, rubble, saved, survived, survives, victims, wall, war
Warner Bros. is buying the story of Nubs, the stray Iraqi mutt who befriended a group of Marines and was shipped home to the U.S. by one of them.
Nubs — so named because most of both his years were lopped off by Iraqi soldiers — befriended Marine Major Brian Dennis and his fellow soldiers while Dennis was on patrol in the Anbar province. When Dennis was required to report to another location, 70 miles away, he bid Nubs farewell, but two days later, Nubs showed up at his new camp.
The story became a media phenomenon in the fall, with Dennis and Nubs appearing on “Today,” “The Tonight Show With Conan O’Brien” and “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.”
In addition to Dennis’ life rights, filmmakers have acquired the top-selling children’s book “Nubs: A Marine, a Mutt and a Miracle,” which Dennis wrote with Mary Nethery and Kirby Larson. The Little, Brown Books for Young Readers title was published two weeks ago and sits at No. 4 on the New York Times children’s best-seller list.
Justin Zackham (“The Bucket List”) will write and produce the film, according to a Reuters report.
(You can learn more about Nubs, and other dog books, on our book page, Good Dog Reads.)
Posted by John Woestendiek November 23rd, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: anbar, book, bought, brian dennis, dog, ears, iraq, iraqi, major, marine, miracle, movie, mutt, nubs, rights, war, warner bros
Gary Rowley hadn’t seen Brindle since 1999, when his dog nosed open a door and disappeared into the night.
This past Sunday — thanks to a microchip, Facebook and an animal lover who volunteered to drive the dog 1,300 miles back home from Oklahoma – they reunited at Rowley’s home in Fredricksburg, Virginia.
“He needed a way home,” said Laurie Swain, who flew from Virginia to Oklahoma, then drove the dog back. “If the dog can wander 1,300 plus miles in 10 years I can certainly spend a few days driving.”
Rowley had given up on finding the dog in the decade since he went missing, shortly before the Super Bowl in 1999.
Then, last month, he received a message on Facebook: “Did you ever have a dog named Brindle?”
The question came from an Oklahoma military family who had discovered Brindle hiding under a bush, NBC News in Washington reported. After a local veterinarian found a microchip in Brindle’s neck, the family tracked Rowley down.
“I don’t know what to say. I just can’t believe someone would do this,” Rowley said.
Rowley has no idea how Brindle managed to wander so far from home, but he says it won’t happen again.
“For him to get out now, he’s going to have to turn a knob and flip a dead bolt,” Rowley said. “I’m still thinking about some of those child safety locks.”
Posted by John Woestendiek November 3rd, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: 10 years, 300 miles, brindle, decade, dog, dogs, door, escape, escaped, facebook, fredrickbsurg, gary rowley, lost, microchip, miracle, missing, oklahoma, reunion, reunited, virginia, wandering
A dog in Idaho fell down a 270-foot deep well, spent 24 hours at the bottom of it, and survived.
Jordan, a 10-year-old English pointer, suffered a broken back and a bruised heart, and veterinarians said it’s it’s almost inconceivable that she’s still alive, KIVI reported. (Click the photo above for the video report.)
After lowering a video camera down the well to determine the dog was still alive, rescuers hauled her up. She spent five hours in surgery. Veterinarians say there is a 50 percent chance she will regain use of back legs.
Either way, her owner is happy to have her back. “She has this will to live, I think, that’s unbelievable,” she said.
Posted by John Woestendiek October 24th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: broken back, dog, english pointer, fall, idaho, jordan, miracle, surgery, survived, survives, veterinary, video, well
Yet another incident of cat abuse has come to light after a witness saw a group of boys swinging a small orange and white cat by his tail.
Baltimore Animal Rescue & Care Shelter (BARCS) reports that the incident took place on the 2600 block of Wilkens Avenue.
The witness reported the boys were swinging the cat in the air, smashing his head on the ground, and also appeared to be trying to throw the cat, by his tail, onto a rooftop.
The woman took the cat and handed it off to another woman who then brought the kitten directly to BARCS.
The Snyder Foundation for animals is offering a reward of $1,000 for anyone with information leading to an arrest and conviction of the boys responsible.
At BARCS, veterinary technicians determined the three-month-old kitten most likely had a broken jaw.
Using the Franky Fund, the technician sent the kitten to Everhart Animal Hospital, where X-rays showed he will need surgery on his jaw. The surgery is expected to be performed later this week.
Staff at BARCS gave the cat a name:
Posted by John Woestendiek September 9th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abuse, animal, baltimore, boys, broken jaw, cat, cats, cruelty, kitten, miracle, slamming, surgery, swinging, throwing, torture, West Baltimore, wilkens, youngsters, youth
An eight-year-old dog is being credited with saving the life of an abandoned newborn baby in Argentina, carrying him from a field and placing him safely alongside her own puppies.
The country’s media are calling him “the miracle baby,” according to the BBC.
The baby boy was born prematurely to a 14-year-old girl, who apparently panicked and abandoned him in a field in a shanty town outside the capital of Buenos Aires.
The dog, named La China picked up the baby and carried him from the field to join her litter. The dog’s owner reported hearing the child crying. The baby had some slight injuries, but no bite marks.
La China, worried about her own puppies, is reported to be petrified by her new found fame, and her owner says he is worried that she is not eating.
Posted by John Woestendiek August 21st, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: abandoned, animals, argentina, baby, dog, finds, found, hero, la china, litter, miracle, pets, puppies, rescue, rescues, saves, video