Two California swimmers were rescued late Thursday afternoon when an unexpected savior swam out after them. The hero was a 3-year-old Burmese mountain dog named Nico.
One of the most popular things to do at the beach is to swim, if you aren’t there to soak in the sun or catch a wave with your trusty surfboard. This favorite pastime almost turned tragic for a couple who couldn’t fight the riptide of the Ventura beach. When the force of the surf caught the woman and dragged her out into the water, her husband thought he could save her.
Her husband ended up sucked into the riptide as well before former life guard Dan Clarke heard the woman yelling. His dog Nico went racing out into the surf, risking his own life as he met the woman on her boogie board.
Clarke says that Nico turned his body around to let the woman grab him, which she did, putting her arm around the dog’s chest (the other around her boogie board) as he swam back to dry land.
The other one of the California swimmers rescued, the woman’s husband, also owes his life to that heroic dog, though details of his rescue are unknown. Nico’s owners had literally adopted him from an animal shelter two months ago, where he had allegedly no ocean experience at all. Dan Clarke calls his dog’s actions pure instinct.
Clarke noted that Nico has ancestry in Newfoundland, where dogs are allegedly raised as life guards, and that could have been where his little friend’s instinct came from.
The couple, who did not exchange names, expressed their gratitude to Clarke and even posed for pictures with Nico.
KTLA‘s Dave Mecham stated that perhaps living by the beach, the couple aren’t the first California swimmers rescued by Nico’s instincts, and might not be the last for the unexpected rescue dog.
The lesson is clear enough for this couple: Do not underestimate the Ventura beach riptide.
[Image via These Days of Mine]