Miraculous rescue of trapped dog in Durban forest


  • A dog lover who recently lost his 10-year-old furry companion rescued a dog that had been barking for days in a nearby forest.
  • The dog had been trapped, prompting Terry van der Walt to act, calling on SPCA officials to help him.
  • After an arduous search, the dog, who was severely dehydrated, was found.

An avid dog lover, who recently lost his 10-year-old furry companion, helped save a Durban dog who was caught in a snare and trapped without food or water for days.

Terry van der Walt, an environmental writer for “Simply Green,” has lost his best friend and dog, Mr. Spot, after a decade of companionship. Mourning the loss, Van Der Walt this week heard the cries of a dog in a forest near his home.

This prompted the resident of Westville, Durban to get on the march as he went the extra mile to save the dog in distress.

PHOTOS | Nine “frightened” dogs removed from “untenable living situation” in informal Cape Town camp

“I moved into this chalet in January of last year. One of the first things I was going to do was secure the garden of my chalet so that it [Mr Spot] wouldn’t disappear into the larger garden and make his way through the forest – once that was done, I was going to walk with him in the forest. There are wild pigs, porcupines and goats … in there.

“Unfortunately he passed away suddenly after having canine bloat. While chasing monkeys he turned his stomach inside his cavity and within hours he was dead, I was never able to take him away. in the great forest. “

He said Mr. Spot was his closest friend and death was difficult.

He said:

When my little dog died it was a great loss as I had him for 10 years from a tiny puppy and spent every day with him.

Cries and pleas to be saved

Still reeling over Mr Spot’s death, Van der Walt heard the screams of a dog in distress earlier this week.

“It wasn’t a dog barking at people or monkeys or anything, it was a dog in distress. I could hear he was in distress, but I didn’t know why he was in distress. . I also knew he wasn’t moving because the sound was coming from the same place, but I wasn’t quite sure where he was. “

He thinks the rescue was Kismet.

“I think these things are related, I was supposed to hear his call. He was supposed to have made the call and I was supposed to have answered it. It rained pretty hard last night and I don’t think it was. would have done I couldn’t have lived with myself if I hadn’t answered the call. “

Terry Van Der Walt with the dog trapped in a Durban forest

Supplied Terry Van Der Walt

Van der Walt said he was concerned on Wednesday when the SPCA was due to come to his home to help locate the dog.

“Wednesday for hours he was silent all morning. I was afraid that when the SPCA passed we would wait for him to bark or howl. Then they would leave and we wouldn’t be any closer to finding him.”

Luckily, the dog started barking again moments after SPCA officials visited Van der Walt’s home.

“I called them to come quickly because I didn’t know how long he would bark for. The SPCA guys quickly got out of the vehicle and we went in to find him.”

The moments of Terry Van Der Walt and the SPCA field workers

Terry Van Der Walt and SPCA field officers moments after rescuing trapped dog

Supplied Terry Van Der Walt

He said the area where the dog was trapped had many valleys and cliffs.

“I had never been there before and was nervous, as were the SPCA officials. My landlord told me we had to be careful because there were steep cliffs. You walk and then there just huge drops below. “

The research

Van der Walt said that initially the Kloof and Highway SPCA wanted him to get a locate on the dog before they could help him, “because they were already inundated with rescue dogs that had run away from the fires. fireworks during New Years’.

“It wasn’t an easy commuter call. So I was very surprised when I got a call from field agent Eric Simamane… to say he was on his way. Yard, barking did it again and he was able to get a feel for where it was coming from.

“Before I knew it, he and his colleague Sipho Mkhize and I were making our way into the forest below, listening to the howls and barks of the dog. We crossed a stream and were on our way to the forest below. walked into a beautiful dark forest., with very little light entering the canopy, all listening to the dog barking and heading in its direction as best we could. About 45 minutes later then the barking stopped. “

READ | The Good Samaritan steps in to help malnourished dog rescued from Stellenbosch University rooftop

A worried and emotionally destroyed Van der Walt asked the officers what to do next. Simamane told him that this often happens when looking for lost dogs.

“There we were sweating in the forest, not knowing whether to stick to the stream or go up the steep hill. Simamane decided to climb the kopje,” he said. .

A few minutes later, the dog was found.

“In a clearing stood this magnificent golden dog with the Labrador cross. Simamane approached cautiously and put the collar on the dog, who seemed very relieved that we had come to save him, his tail wagging a lot, and we The three of them spoke to him, reassuring him.

He said:

A coarse metal collar had caught him around his left front paw, which was slightly swollen. Eric managed to remove the metal collar, but not before he had tied the dog’s muzzle with the leash, just in case the dog bit him in fear or pain. Weak, but so eager to get away from where he had been held captive for days, the dog picked up his pace as we worked on the way home. As soon as we reached the stream the dog ran into the water and drank and drank and drank.

He said the dog was severely dehydrated.

“I have never seen a thirst quenched with such enthusiasm. With the sun right above it was not easy to get home, but my neighbor and owner David yelled from above, and j ‘cried back and shook the saplings so he could see where we were down there, and he could steer us out the door of our property. ”

Hot, sweaty and covered in cuts, Van der Walt, Simamane and Mkhize emerged from the forest, with a happy puppy.

“Simamane said the dog would have a medical exam and they would check if he was missing, and if not, he would be offered for adoption within seven days.”

Van der Walt said he hopes the story of his experience will encourage hope in others.

“The only great thing that came out of this thing is that there are thousands of people who have responded positively to my post about this rescue. It tells me that there are a lot more people who are caring, kind, considerate and compassionate to people breaking and burning things fighting with each other, racism, sexism, all the horrible things that we are subjected to every day are done by a small group of people.

“They take up a lot of our waking time, it’s unacceptable that our world is in turmoil, there are too many voices of anger and retaliation and frustration and ego. There are more people doing nice things. To all of the people who responded to that, thank you very much for being so considerate, please try to show your support for animal organizations. “

Never miss a story. Choose from our range of newsletters to receive the news you want straight to your inbox.


Comments are closed.