A day at the seashore very nearly turned deadly for three families off the coast of Sperlonga, Italy.
Fourteen people, including eight children as young as 6, were out swimming when the water got choppy. Try as they might, they couldn’t get back to their rafts or floaties. When help finally arrived, it looked a little different than it might on other beaches.
This looked like a job for the lifedogs! SICS, an Italian canine rescue school, trains good boys and girls to save lives. They currently have 300 dog units on 30 different beaches across Italy and typically select breeds like Labradors and Newfoundlands because of their water-resistant coats and webbed toes.
On that fateful day in Sperlonga, three units were sent to assist the human lifeguards. Canines Eros, Mira, and Mya came to the rescue, diving into the water and easily swimming 330 feet out to where the swimmers were struggling to stay afloat.
The brave pups each towed one person to shore before rushing back out to save someone else.
The trio of dogs made short work of their daring rescue, bringing the last of the victims to shore after about 15 minutes! The swimmers were beyond grateful and took a moment to thank the adorable canines and pose for a picture.
Roberto Gasbarri, the head of SICS’ rescue dog school, told CNN that the dogs are a “fundamental” part of lifeguarding in Italy. They have been using rescue pups for over 30 years now, and they’ve saved thousands of lives!
Look at all those grateful faces! We shudder to think what may have happened if the canine rescue team hadn’t arrived when it did. Training dogs to be lifeguards is such a terrific idea! We hope this trend starts in other nations, too.
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