Lucky dog: Pup rescued from rip tide off Bethany Beach

A dog trapped by a rip current was rescued near the Indian River Inlet last week, officials said.

 The Delaware Animal Services dispatch center received a call just after 11 a.m. on Nov. 6 that a dog was in distress about a mile south of the Inlet, according to a press release.

Cruz, a 4-year-old Black Labrador Retriever, had been swept about 500 yards offshore and was unable to  free himself, the caller said.

Animal service officers were immediately dispatched and requested water rescue equipment and assistance from the Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company.

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Two Bethany Beach firefighters in cold water wet suits used a jet ski equipped for water rescues to bring Cruz back to shore.  He was cold and tired but uninjured. Cruz was reunited with his family.

“Cruz was very happy and lucky to be rescued from the frigid water,” said  Delaware Animal Services Captain Reed Jones. “Dog owners should always use caution around water. Keeping dogs on a leash and under control of their owner is critical to their safety. Luckily, Cruz’s owners contacted Delaware Animal Services, and trained rescuers were able to get to him in time.”

The Office of Animal Welfare advises residents not to attempt to rescue animals in distress on their own, especially around cold water or ice. Animal-related emergencies can be reported to the 24-hour Delaware Animal Services hotline at 302-255-4646.

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