THE OWNERS of a springer spaniel that was plucked to safety by hero firefighters after falling down a well have praised the rescue crew.
Rachel Walker and fiance Samuel Broom had been walking family dog Seymore when he fell down the poorly guarded well at Kinterbury Creek.
Student nurse Rachel said she clambered in herself but quickly realised how dangerous it was and called the fire service who were there within minutes.
“A child could have easily gone down there chasing after a ball,” she said.
“I’m just thankful it was my dog who could swim and not a child or a smaller dog that couldn’t. It was really really dangerous.”
They pair had been taking Seymore for a walk at the Saltash Passage mudflats area near St Budeaux after 9am on Saturday when the eight-year-old dog ran through a gap in some broken fencing.
He then fell six foot down the ditch into what could be described as a well or gulley.
“I went in there myself after him,” said 22-year-old Rachel.
“I went running in and suddenly realised how dangerous it was, I panicked and rang for help.
“The fire service were really good, I don’t know what I would have done without them. I’m incredibly grateful to them.
“The vet said he was incredibly cold, two degrees below what he should be, I don’t know how much longer he would of survived in there.”
He was in water believed to be 12 feet deep and frantically trying to keep his head above water when firefighters were arrived.
A special rescue team from Camels Head joined a fire crew from Crownhill at the scene.
They said Seymore was in stagnant water and "extremely tired" when they arrived.
Crew manager Dave Allen said: "There was a gap in some railings and the dog had gone through the well which was partially boarded up. It was filled halfway up with stagnant horrible water.
"We had to create access for ourselves by cutting through some of the boarding. We then lowered down one of our firefighters, Matt Galpin, who went down wearing a dry suit, he secured the dog and carried him out to his owners."
Straight after Matt returned the pet to the grateful pair, they rushed Seymore to a vets in Crownhill where he was treated for hypothermia.
Rachel added: “I just want to say how grateful I am to the fire service. I’ve never been so worried and they were incredible.”
Seymore, a soppy dog say Rachel and Samuel, returned home from the vets yesterday afternoon having sufficiently warmed up.