Dog in sea ‘shout’ underlines RNLI advice in Aberdeen
Aberdeen’s inshore lifeboat launched this afternoon when a member of the public expressed concern for the safety of people who appeared to have gone into the sea to try to rescue a small dog.
The spaniel was reported to be on rocks on the north side of the harbour breakwater at Footdee.
The lifeboat – Aberdeen’s D-class ‘Buoy Woody 85N – was under way less than 10 minutes after the initial call, with her volunteer crew of three on board.
The crew quickly established that the dog had come ashore on the north side, together with the people who were now being assisted by UK Coastguard personnel, but had then run across to Pocra Quay on the south side where it had stranded itself on a ledge exposed by the low tide. The lifeboat crew ‘shepherded’ the dog – seemingly an able swimmer – to the former lifeboat slipway from where the dog ran off through local streets.
“This pooch showed something that lifeboat crews know well – that most dogs are good swimmers,” says lifeboat helm Grant Bruce. “When people enter the water to try to save a dog, its often the person who ends up in the greater danger. That’s when human tragedies occur.
“The RNLI always urges people not to enter the water to try to save pets; go to the nearest spot where the dog can easily get out, then call to your dog from there. But if your dog is in real danger – perhaps being swept out to sea by the current, dial 999 for the Coastguard. Do not go into the water yourself.”
Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.