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When reports came flooding in that a dog was in the middle of Hartbeespoort Dam struggling to make her way to shore, Station 25 (Hartbeespoort Dam) wasted no time in launching to find and save her.

On the afternoon of Friday, 17 September, Hartbeespoort Dam’s community Facebook page was abuzz with reports of a dog in the middle of the dam in danger of drowning. At the same time, Station 25’s station commander Arthur Crewe received call after call (more than 20, he says) from concerned members of the public asking the NSRI to help. Arthur and three crew members mobilised quickly, launching the rescue vessel Sea Legs and within minutes had reached the area where the dog had last been spotted.

They noticed a jetskier trying to guide the dog in the direction of the shore. They reached the frightened, exhausted animal and brought her to shore where two bystanders, Jaco and Anne, from Kosmos, were waiting with blankets and water. They gently warmed the dog, rehydrated her, and offered her a little food, all the while trying to keep her as calm as possible.

“Anne then took the dog, which we named Sea Legs to the Hartbeespoort Animal Welfare Society (HAWS),” Arthur says. “When we found her, she was about 100 metres from shore, and it’s unlikely she went for a swim by herself,” he adds. While reluctant to speculate, it’s very telling that despite all the publicity, no one has claimed the dog, and when she was found she had quite a severe head wound. She was also on heat."


Thankfully, Sea Legs is in the capable and safe hand of HAWS personnel who are attending to her injuries and taking care of her. A foster family has been found, and she can look forward to a safe and loving home in the future.

Grateful thanks to all who reported the incident and to Jaco and Anne for their loving assistance.

Animals, especially birds, have been known to get caught in the overgrown hyacinth forest on Harties. The NSRI urges anyone who spots an animal or human in distress on the dam to please call the station immediately on 082 990 5961 or NSRI’s Emergency Operations Centre on 087 094 9774.

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