Heroic dog saves her best friend from drowning in the backyard swimming pool

Sometimes dog owners might wonder what their canine companions do when they're not around, but few would imagine a heroic rescue like the one that happened recently in a backyard pool in Boskburg, South Africa.

For Chucky the lucky toy Pomeranian pooch, the day could have ended tragically. The tiny 13-year-old pup accidentally slipped and fell into the family swimming pool, and though he was able to keep himself afloat, he couldn't get out. If he were alone, he could easily have gotten worn out and drowned.

Thankfully, his best friend Jessie, a 7-year-old Staffordshire bull terrier, was there with him and noticed his struggle. Poor Jessie was desperate to get him out, as shown in the home's security camera footage that captured the harrowing incident. In scenes from the footage, we can see Jessie trying to work out how to get Chucky out of the water without hurting him, and it's seriously the sweetest thing. What we don't see in this short clip is that it actually took Jessie 34 minutes to rescue him—she just wouldn't give up.


Incredible moment hero dog saves best friend from drowning in swimming pool www.youtube.com

After multiple gentle attempts at tugging him out of the water by his ear, Jessie succeeds, and the two doggos then scuttle off to play together, happy as can be.

The dogs' owners, Byron Thanarayen and his wife Melissa, discovered the footage while trying to solve the mystery of why Chucky's head was wet. Byron told The Times South Africa that Melissa insisted he might have been in the swimming pool, but he said the dogs never went into the pool unsupervised.

"We tried to look for clues as to where he could have wet his head," he said. "We thought maybe he dipped his head in the water, but there was no mess in the house to support this suggestion."

They finally checked the security cameras and discovered that Chucky had slipped, then watched the whole rescue play out.

"It was heart-wrenching to watch," Byron told The Times. "We still struggle to watch that video today, just thinking of what could have happened if Jessie was not there."

Jessie is a rescue dog that Byron and Melissa adopted from the SPCA four years ago. They are Jessie's third owners, and oddly enough, the previous owners had returned her to the SPCA because they said she didn't get along with their other dogs. That was not the case here, as Byron said Jessie got along with their other two dogs from the day they brought her home.

"Jessie is the best dog we have ever had," Byron said. "I'm really proud of her, considering she's the youngest."

Byron told The Times that their dogs know how to swim, but they only swim when they're in the pool with them. The incident is a good reminder that accidents can happen and that even if dogs know how to swim, leaving them unsupervised by a swimming pool isn't a good idea. Byron and Melissa said they'll be installing a pool cover now.

"It never occurred to us previously that we needed the cover, but since this incident we saw how important it is to have one," he said.

There are no solid statistics on how many pets drown in family swimming pools because most incidents don't get reported, but estimates are in the thousands. Northeast Animal Hopsital in St. Petersburg, Florida suggests knowing the risks for your own dogs, safeguarding the pool area with gates that animals can't get over or around, teaching dogs to swim (but not relying on that alone), and making sure to supervise your animals when they are near any large body of water.

Thankfully, Chucky's story had a happy ending, but not every dog will have a Jessie around to save them. This video is a good reminder that pets and pools can be a dangerous combo, as well as a good reminder that dogs are truly incredible creatures.

Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less
via Fox 5 / YouTube

Back in February, northern Virginia was experiencing freezing temperatures, so FOX 5 DC's Bob Barnard took to the streets to get the low down. His report opens with him having fun with some Leesburg locals and trying his hand at scraping ice off their parked cars.

But at about the 1:50 mark, he was interrupted by an unaccompanied puppy running down the street towards the news crew.

The dog had a collar but there was no owner in sight.

Barnard stopped everything he was doing to pick the dog up off the freezing road to keep it safe. "Forget the people we talked to earlier, I want to get to know this dog," he told his fellow reporters back in the warm newsroom.

Keep Reading Show less
Courtesy of CeraVe
True

"I love being a nurse because I have the honor of connecting with my patients during some of their best and some of their worst days and making a difference in their lives is among the most rewarding things that I can do in my own life" - Tenesia Richards, RN

From ushering new life into the world to holding the hand of a patient as they take their last breath, nurses are everyday heroes that deserve our respect and appreciation.

To give back to this community that is always giving so selflessly to others, CeraVe® put out a call to nurses to share their stories for a chance to be featured in Heroes Behind the Masks, a digital content series shining a light on nurses who go above and beyond to provide safe and quality care to patients and their communities.

First up: Tenesia Richards, a labor and delivery nurse working in New York City who, in addition to her regular job, started a community outreach program in a homeless shelter that houses expectant mothers for up to one year postpartum.

Tenesia | Heroes Behind the Masks presented by CeraVe www.youtube.com

Upon learning at a conference that black mothers in the U.S. die at three to four times the rate of white mothers, one of the widest of all racial disparities in women's health, Richards decided to take further action to help her community. She, along with a handful of fellow nurses, volunteered to provide antepartum, childbirth and postpartum education to the women living at the shelter. Additionally, they looked for other ways to boost the spirits of the residents, like throwing baby showers and bringing in guest speakers. When COVID-19 hit and in-person gatherings were no longer possible, Richards and her team found creative workarounds and created holiday care packages for the mothers instead.

Keep Reading Show less