Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Oh my! A different 'rescued' Cairn, Holly

Rescue drama as Holly goes barking up the wrong tree

Published Date:
23 January 2010 in Scotsman News (Scotland)


An afternoon walk in the woods nearly ended in disaster for one dog when she plummeted 50ft down an embankment, sparking a three-hour rescue operation involving specialist firefighters. Crews said Holly the Cairn Terrier escaped death by only a whisker, landing on a ledge on Corstorphine Hill which stopped her falling 90ft to the ground. Gordon Fisher, group manager with Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service, said: "The dog should have her name changed to Lucky."

The dramatic rescue was sparked when dog walker Fiona Hay, dialed 999 after Holly, her friend's pet fell at about 12:40pm yesterday. Ms Hay, of Parkgrove Terrace, had taken the one-year-old dog for a walk as a regular favour for Joanne Burrell, who lives in Castle Avenue.She also had Ms Burrell's other dog Winnie, a one-year-old Jack Russell cross, and her own pet Tilly, three, a Beagle, with her. But when the dogs ran off to explore, and Holly failed to return, Ms Hay became anxious, spending half an hour looking for the white terrier among the woods. She said: "I phoned another friend who came straight away - I went one way and she went the other to try to find Holly."I thought perhaps she had lost her footing and then I heard a noise and looked up and she was on a rocky ledge."

Crews from Tollcross and Sighthill rushed to the scene and firefighter Ian Porteous abseiled down to the dog, which was crying loudly on the ledge. Ms Hay said: "When she saw the fireman she tried to reach him, she really wanted to get down." Mr Porteous tucked Holly in a rucksack and made his way down the drop to reunite her with her walker just before 4pm. Ms Burrell, said: "When Fiona called I couldn't believe it all the talk of the fire brigade and rescue teams. I just got there straight away. I knew they had been away for a long time, but thought perhaps Fiona had taken them somewhere exciting for the afternoon."

Holly was unscathed by her adventure and Ms Hay added: "I cannot thank the fire crews enough. They were wonderful."

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