Penny’s rescue from a pipe took plenty of manpower — some big and some small.
On Sunday, rescuers from the Greenville Emergency and Rescue Squad tried for hours to free the red tick coonhound, who had chased a raccoon into a drain pipe during a hunting excursion the day before, according to the Greeneville Sun, who reported the story. A pair of kids were also called on to help.
The lengthy operation began early in the morning as a team consisting of Kevin “Bucky” Ayers, Paul Frutiger, Phillip Cutshaw and Phil Haffcke came to the aid of Penny, owned by a man named Stacy Ricker. A little help was needed from the children of Ricker’s fiancé, Casey Carter — Doyle “Bubby” Carter, 12, and Kailee Carter, 9 — little being the operative word, because they were small enough to crawl inside the pipe.
“We tried pushing the dog backwards and that didn’t work. We tried to pull her out backwards,” Ayers, captain of the mission, told the Sun. “Every time we would get the rope around her leg, it would slip off.”
They ended up using a mini excavator, which came courtesy of Penny’s owner. Ayers said: “He got it and dug one section of the pipe out so we could get closer to the dog. I tried to crawl in, but I was too big.”
Both Bubby and Kailee wanted to help, with Kailee successfully getting the rope around the dog’s waist when she crawled in the pipe, the paper said, but still to no avail.
Later in the afternoon, after using the excavator again, they were able to reach the pup, who “came out wiggling her tail,” Carter told the Sun. “She drank about a half gallon of water and got a sausage biscuit when she got out.”
Carter said Penny rested following the rescue, which, by all accounts, was a team effort. “I was amazed at the rescue squad and I’m proud of the kids. That’s something they will remember for the rest of their lives,” Carter said. “The kids were our only option, and they were all for it.”