Many people like to celebrate holidays by setting off fireworks, but what is a bright festive show for humans can be a scary nightmare for our pets. Many owners have spent their holidays trying to calm down a dog scared of the loud noises.
And every Fourth of July, America’s biggest night for fireworks, there are many cases of dogs getting scared and running away from home. But after one family pet disappeared for days, a group of kayakers came to the rescue.
On July 9, the kayakers were heading down the Chariton River in Centerville, Iowa when they came upon an unusual sight: a frightened dog, alone on the river bank.
Realizing the dog desperately needed help, they decided to give her a ride. They showed up at just the right time.
“If we wouldn’t have gotten her off the river, there was no way of getting her off that riverbank,” kayaker Shakira Sias told KCCI. “The waters come up so much now that she would have been washed away into that.”
They checked her collar and found out the dog was named Ethyl, a 10-year-old boxer. They were also able to contact Ethyl’s owners, and found out that the dog had run off on July 3, scared off by fireworks, and had been missing for six days.
Member of the group Jessica Rose, who gave Ethyl a ride, documented the story on TikTok. She said that Ethyl was scared and tired, and covered in ticks.
The dog was very hungry, and the kayakers fed her Cheetos, the only snack they had available. They also gave her water.
Despite the ordeal, Ethyl calmly takes the kayak journey down the river, as if she finally knows she’s going home.
“She was shaken and scared,” Jessica told KCCI. “But I don’t know about two hours later she was standing up. She was happy. She seemed to actually kind of like floating down the river.”
The group of good samaritans made plans to reunite Ethyl with her family. In an update video, Jess says the owners’ son picked up the dog, and while she was malnourished had no major health issues. She has received tick treatments and has been rehydrating.
The owner, who was at a wedding when they found Ethyl on the river, was thrilled to have her dog back. Jess says the owner snuggled up with Ethyl all day and the dog was “happy as can be.”
They said they have plans to meet up with Ethyl and her family soon. The old dog was clearly very grateful to be home, thanks to her kind rescuers.