A doggy in distress was rescued by firefighters on Thursday evening after it apparently wandered out an open window onto the third-storey roof of a hotel.
Tammy Jordan captured photos of the scene as it unfolded at Painter’s Lodge. She had just returned from April Point on a water taxi when she noticed “quite a commotion” on a rooftop of the lodge, which is located in North Campbell River.
“Some ladies staying at Painter’s Lodge had their windows open and their dog Tess walked out onto the roof,” said Jordan in an email to the Mirror.
“The ladies tried to pick up the dog and bring it back in on their own but were unable to due to the steep pitch of the roof.”
The Campbell River Fire Department responded to a call for help around 7:40 p.m., and firefighter Chris Schulte accompanied the dog’s owner in the bucket of a tower truck to retrieve the animal, said Thomas Doherty, chief of the Campbell River Fire Department.
Photos taken by Jordan show a medium-sized dog, possibly a type of poodle, standing at the very summit of the three-storey Quadra Wing of the hotel.
One of the photos captures the moment of rescue, as a woman reaches out to the canine, while Schulte handles the controls of the bucket in the background.
The tower truck provides more safety than an ordinary ladder for this kind of operation, said Doherty.
“The benefit of the tower truck is that it’s a safe application for rescuing people from elevations,” he said. “We can put the owner and the dog into the bucket and bring them down safely, rather than trying to carry them down a ladder.”
Doherty said that animal rescues tend to happen a few times each year.
“We’ve had a number of horse rescues,” he said. “Sometimes horses get trapped into muddy or boggy areas, so we’ve done a few of those in the past.”
Local firefighters have also rescued wild animals that have become stuck in swimming pools, for example.
“It’s not a regular occurrence, but we have to be prepared,” he said.
Pet owners often try to rescue their animals, but then require help from firefighters, he said.
“Typically what happens is the owners will try to self-rescue, and they end up getting into trouble themselves,” he said.
He said this was the first time he’d seen a dog stuck on a roof.
“It’s not something you see all the time,” he said. “If a cat goes up on a tree or a roof like that, they usually find their way down. But having a dog up there is unusual.”