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Dog rescued from drowning after sausage dangled from drone in Hampshire

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A dog in Hampshire has been rescued from rising tides with a sausage attached to a drone.

The Jack Russell terrier, called Millie, went missing after coming loose from her lead in Havant, The Guardian reported.

She was found stranded on mudflats near Portsmouth, with rising tides threatening to sweep her out to sea, prompting a rescue effort to swing into action.

£50
A beloved pet dog has finally been reunited with its family after a massive search involving police, coastguards and a pair of sausage-dangling drones.  As part of the four-day operation, desperate searchers resorted to attaching Millie the Jack Russell's favourite savoury snack to drones and flying them over mud flats in a bid to lure her to safety.
Must Credit DDSAR/Solent
Image:
A local resident cooked the sausage, which was from Aldi, for the drone pilot to use to help the dog to safety. Pic: DDSAR/Solent

Police, firefighters, and coastguards tried tirelessly for four days to rescue her, but were left scratching their heads when even kayaking to her wouldn’t work.

The chances of Millie being reunited with her owner seemed increasingly unlikely, when a rescuer had the idea of attaching a sausage to a drone with the hope of tempting her to safety.

The chair of the Denmead Drone Search and Rescue team, Chris Taylor, told The Guardian: “It was a crazy idea.

“One of the local residents on the beach where we were flying from supplied us with the sausages – I think they were from Aldi. The woman cooked them up for us and we attached them with string.”

Luckily, the pork-dangling plan worked, with the terrier following the sausage towards her rescuers, away from the rising tides, to safety.

‘The last resort’

“If we hadn’t… got her away from that area the tide would have come in and she would have been at risk of drowning,” said Mr Taylor.

“It was something we had never tried before – the sausages were the last resort.”

£50 per pic
A beloved pet dog has finally been reunited with its family after a massive search involving police, coastguards and a pair of sausage-dangling drones.  As part of the four-day operation, desperate searchers resorted to attaching Millie the Jack Russell's favourite savoury snack to drones and flying them over mud flats in a bid to lure her to safety.
Must Credit DDSAR/Solent
Image:
Jack Russell, Millie, was reunited with her owner after an extensive rescue operation. Pic: DDSAR/Solent

Mr Taylor said it was a rescue method teams facing the same challenge in the future might want to try.

He said: “We certainly would consider using sausages again: every dog and search operation is always going to be different, but if we were ever in a similar situation again we would employ the same methods to lure the dog.”

Ran away a second time

The maximum take-off weight of the drone had to be checked before attaching the sausage to it to make sure it would fly.

Once on higher ground, Millie ran away a second time, leaving her owner Emma Oakes worried once again for her safety.

The pet was eventually found inland from the marsh and ran into the arms of her owner’s father when she was found.

Ms Oakes, a carehome owner, told The Guardian: “Relief just poured over me. It was just absolutely fantastic to have her home.”

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