Injured dog: Carry out or leave him?
God forbid this ever happening but if you took a dog on an two night three day tramping trip and you were say mid way through your second day and your dog got injured and was unable to walk what would you do? Attempt to carry him out, tie him up next to a water source and shelter and walk out for help, leave him loose and hope you can find him again when you get help or leave him for dead? Iv never had to deal with this kind of situation but if it ever happened to me I know that the logical choice would be to leave him and walk out for help and hope I could find him again but that would break my heart leaving him on his own. Has anyone been in this situation before?
You know I was pondering this question on my last tramp. Gilly the dog comes on every tramp, bar national parks. And I got to thinking what I would do in an extreme situation, if she was to be seriously hurt. I'm pretty sure I'd pull the pin on the old plb to be honest. I'd be devastated if she got serious injured and was in real danger of losing her life. But I've never actually crossed that bridge before.
Yeah I also thought about using the PLB but I assume you would get in abit of trouble for that wouldnt you?
I was tramping with a mate when a gust of wind blew his much loved dog off the Pohangina swing bridge some years age. The fall onto the rocks below broke its back. With no plb or any means to carry the crippled dog out we had no choice but to end it right there for the dog and bury it nearby. To say it was a very emotional moment for everyone concerned is an understatement. It still cuts me up to think about it all these years later. For a dog, Jack was a real gentleman. I haven't met better.
@gazcan oh god thats bloody horrible. I guess thats a risk everyone takes heading into the back country. If you had a PLB would have you set if off? I was wondering if youd get fined if you used it on a seriously injured dog
Good question. Possibly, I think. Although I'm not sure if a vet could've done much for him as he was in pretty bad shape. Life can be cruel at times.
That last option (leave it for dead) is not on the table Ever Beyond that there are circumstances to consider each time it happens that will often make the choice for you. If the animal is likely not to survive there is only one option but what if the injury is quite fixable? It would depend on your ability to carry the dog to a road end and your ability to do first aid. As long as you dont use that last option the only judgement is from yourself
This is how see it. Gilly is my tramping companion. I will treat her almost the same as any human tramping companion. The only real difference is she has far higher pain threshold than the average human. But in life or death situations the plb will be used. I will argue this point with anyone questioning my decision about this, if I had to do it. It's black or white for me.
It would depend on the level/type injury of course, but I would use a plb if there was no sensible, safe or humane alternative. I think the court of public opinion would side with someone caring for an animal in distress over using a public resource for such a rescue. I think you're obligated to care for your canine tramping companions to that level. Remember when that police dog went bush on a training exercise a couple of years back? While it may have been an expensive police dog gone awol, nobody questioned the resources being used to find him. It had that 'feel good factor in a cynical world' that we all respond to.
If carrying the the dog out would put *your* well-being at risk, I would think you would be justified in triggering the PLB. Leaving it behind, injured, would be an offence in it's self - cruelty to animals. Mind you, with gazcan's broken back story (and that would have been difficult to deal with), the action taken seems the only option, to me. So, carry out or hit the PLB - leaving it isn't an option, imo.
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