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, Last Updated: 6:42 PM ET
DENVER – Firefighters in Colorado rescued a pet dog that fell 200 feet (61 metres) down an open mine shaft, lowering two crew members down the hole before winching the canine safe and sound to the surface.
West Metro Fire and Rescue published photos on Tuesday showing “Bailey” being hugged by her owner after the successful operation a day earlier in the Roxborough area, a few miles (km) south of Denver.
The fire department said a technical crew carried out a “steep angle rope rescue,” lowering a pair of rescuers who secured the dog before pulling her back to the surface “where she was reunited with her very happy owner.”
Among those praising the rescuers on social media was owner Liza Martinez, who posted more pictures of “Bailey the miracle dog” back safely at home. She also described on Facebook how she had to tell her 9-year-old daughter that it was unlikely her pet had survived the fall into the mine.
“I watched the tears swell up in her eyes,” Martinez wrote. She said the rescue operation lasted three hours, but that eventually the family’s prayers were answered. Bailey was alive and well, and did not have a single broken bone.