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Hikers Risk Own Lives to Save Dog Missing for 22 DaysKevin Hays Salem-News.com
After calling police, the family went back to stay with the dog which was in a location with steep terrain, and with no easy way out.
(LEBANON, Ore.) - A Scio, Oregon couple is happy to have their family dog back home again after 22 days, thanks to a family out on a hike and the Linn County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue volunteers.
The Linn County Sheriff's office received a call on Saturday night around 7:45 p.m., of a possible lost hiker in the Cascadia area, just east of Lebanon.
When deputies arrived on scene, they learned that a family who was out hiking along the South Santiam River from Latiwi Creek Road had found a very weak and hungry dog two miles upstream from the road.
After calling police, the family went back to stay with the dog, which was described as a Bull Mastiff and they were in a location with steep terrain with no easy way out.
Then, one of the deputies remembered seeing a lost dog poster in the area. The dog was identified as Madison, a ten year old Bull Mastiff that had been lost in the area of Sevenmile Horse Camp on July 4th.
At around midnight, a team of Linn County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue volunteers were deployed to the area to assess the situation and ensure the safety of the family.
They made contact with the family at about 3:00 a.m., and all of the family members were found in good condition and Madison, who after snacking on granola bars and dog food, was sleeping comfortably in a sleeping bag. The team decided that due to the difficult terrain they would wait until daylight to attempt the rescue of Madison.
At 6:30 a.m., the group began the process of getting the dog out, which included a climb up over and back down a steep rock face, and several hundred yards of travel in the creek. At one point, Madison, had to swim as the rescue group traversed in waist deep water.
With the help of GPS, the team was able to identify a route from the creek uphill to the Santiam Wagon Road, a hiking trail that lead back to the main road, which included moving cross-country through thick brush and up to 200 feet of elevation.
At 9:45 a.m. on Sunday, Madison was reunited with her owners, Lori Davis and Patrick Milligan from Scio. Needless to say, they were relieved to have her back, and thanked the family and the sheriff's office search and rescue team for their hard work, and risking their lives to save the family pet.
Police identified the brave family of hikers as Brian Floro and his girlfriend Julie Foubert, of Lebanon, and her son Scott Foubert of Albany and his girlfriend Rebecca Heuberger of Lebanon.
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