MEDFIELD, Mass. —Almost every fire department of Norfolk County was called to 11 Elm Street on August 4 because a male dog fell over 35 feet down a dry well.
Kemper Dorsey called for his dog, Vedder, and knew something was wrong when he couldn’t see or hear him. Dorsey had last seen him running after a squirrel. As he searched for Vedder, he came across a rotten piece of wood covering a hole. After inspecting it he discovered Vedder at the bottom of the hole and called 911 immediately.
Once all the firefighters arrived, the 24 technical specialists got together to assess the situation and figure out how to get Vedder out as quickly as possible. The team lowered a fan down the three foot wide shaft to keep fresh air flowing.
“We were dealing with a potentially unstable old brick well approximately 35 to 40 feet deep. So we had to get down in there and luckily the dog was friendly,” said Norfolk Technical Rescue Chief Robert Spurr.
Just before 1 p.m., firefighter Keith Darling was lowered by rope so he could hold onto Vedder as they were brought back to the surface.
“While he was trapped, the dog was yippy, barking at us a bit, so we knew he was breathing, doing OK down there,” said Darling. “When we got down there, the dog was just like, ‘Come on human, get me out of here.’ “
Even though a large group of firefighters arrived, the rescue was well-oriented and took no longer than an hour.
Vedder was taken to the Tufts Veterinary Emergency Treatment and Specialties in Walpole to be checked out. He appeared to be doing well.
“I don’t know how the dog survived,” said Spurr. “There was nothing in the bottom of the hole to cushion his fall.”