Foxy the Chihuahua might only be tiny, but she had a big adventure after escaping from the family home in Pegwell Bay, near Ramsgate on Sunday afternoon (19 October).
Hayley King, owner of the four-year-old, red-haired Chihuahua believes one of her children left the back door open and Foxy saw her opportunity to take herself off for an afternoon stroll. Once the family realised she was missing they spent over three hours searching for her, alerted the police and put up posters and messages on Facebook.
At 6.30pm Hayley received a call from Kent Police to advise that someone had seen her run past the Stanley Gray pub in Pegwell Bay, but couldn’t catch her as she darted towards the undergrowth at the top of the cliff.
"As soon as I went to the cliff, I immediately recognised her cry but couldn’t see her," said Hayley, "but thankfully off duty Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) firefighter, Gareth Redmond came to help. He climbed down to look for Foxy in the brambles and undergrowth, but just couldn’t get to her."
Gareth put in a call for assistance and colleagues from Blue Watch at Ramsgate Fire Station used a thermal imaging camera to find the adventurous pooch, whose faint whimpering could be heard in the distance.
Foxy was quickly brought back to safety using safe access equipment - a line-based system for lowering and raising firefighters into areas of difficult or hazardous access and happily reunited with her grateful owner by 8.50pm.
Hayley added: "Amazingly Foxy wasn’t even injured, she was checked over by the vet and had a few scratches and just needed a bath. I can’t thank the team enough for rescuing her. I would also like to say a big thank you to Gareth for his efforts and to his partner Nikki, who stayed with us throughout and was really helpful and reassuring during a very upsetting time."