Owner keen to thank pair who rescued dog

Herald Series: Julie Polley’s dog Biff was saved by two rowers after he got into trouble in the Thames. Picture: OX53642 Antony Moore Buy this photo » Julie Polley’s dog Biff was saved by two rowers after he got into trouble in the Thames. Picture: OX53642 Antony Moore

A DOG lover has praised two mystery good Samaritans after they helped save the life of her pet. The pair of rowers halted their training to rescue Biff after he got into trouble chasing ducks on the Thames.

The nine-year-old pooch was struggling to keep his head above water near Abingdon when he was plucked to safety by the oarsmen.

His owner Julie Polley said the unknown pair saved her pet’s life.

She now hopes they will come forward so she can thank them for their efforts. The incident took place on Wednesday morning south of Abingdon Marina where the river diverts towards Culham Lock.

Ms Polley, of Ashmole Road, Abingdon, said: “If it wasn’t for the two rowers I don’t know whether he would still be alive – they are my heroes. I was so scared, frantically calling for him. I’m just so lucky they were there.”

She added: “I was standing there thinking ‘should I go in?’, but there’s a big danger sign in the middle of the river and you do hear these horror stories about people who go in after their dogs, but I was thinking I might never see him again.

“Thankfully the rowers heard me and they came back and decided to go and get him.

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“When they brought him back, one of the rowers had him on his lap and was covered in mud and twigs. He said Biff’s head had gone under the water and he had to grab him.”

Ms Polley, 50, said the Lhasa Apso/toy poodle cross “seemed oblivious” to his ordeal and walked home contentedly on his lead.

She said Biff has a habit of chasing ducks and likes a paddle but said there were “just so many ducks on this occasion that he kept swimming after one after another right into the middle of the river”.

She added: “I’m just so grateful that these two men stopped. Some people might have gone by and not worried about it.”

  • Are you one of the rowers or know who they are? Contact Thom Airs on 01865 425422 or tairs@oxfordmail.co.uk

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