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Duke the dog's back in the dry after river drama
12:00pm Wednesday 13th February 2013 in News
A MUM last night spoke of her family’s joy after being reunited with their pet dog Duke.
Two-and-a-half year-old Duke ran out of the family’s open front door and ended up struggling in the freezing waters of the River Thames.
But thanks to an eagle-eyed passer-by and a determined bunch of firefighters, the akita/husky cross was safely returned home two hours later.
The rescue operation, which involved three fire and rescue vehicles, closed Bridge Street in Abingdon on Friday.
Owner Angie Painting, 33, of Drayton Road, said: “I just want to say a big thank you to the fire service. Everybody knows how much I love my dog.”
Duke fell into the river near Abingdon Bridge but managed to scramble onto a fallen tree.
Two firefighters steered their rescue boat close to Duke and, once they had gained his trust, scooped him to safety.
Mrs Painting, pictured centre with, from left, son Nathaniel, 12, sister Stephanie, 18, son Joshua, nine, and daughter Naomi, 13, said: “The kids are over the moon he is safe.”
Joshua, who goes to Caldecott Primary School, said: “I was scared when he got in the river, because it was so high from all the rain. It is nice to have him back.”
Dushan Salwathura, landlord of the Nag’s Head pub on the bridge, saw the whole rescue.
He said: “There were a dozen people stood watching so I had a look. I’m glad they save him.”
Picture: OX57319 Jon Lewis