Rescuers brave narrow 40-foot bear cave to save trapped dog.

It’s always inspiring to see people saving animals, but one crew truly went above and beyond during one recent rescue mission, braving a narrow 40-feet cave drop — and a run-in with a wild bear — to save a trapped dog.

According to a Facebook post from the Waldens Creek Volunteer Fire Department, the Sevier County Technical Rope Rescue Team, which included rope rescue technicians from various area fire departments, was dispatched to rescue a dog named Charlie.

Charlie was stranded 40 feet down a very small cave shaft. After arriving on the incident and hiking to Charlie’s position, two firefighters climbed into the cave to hunt for the dog, but were startled when they discovered they weren’t alone.

Inside the cave was a 2-year-old, 200-pound bear, sleeping five feet below and trapping Charlie inside. Unable to get to Charlie without startling the bear, the team set up cameras before exiting the cave, and waited for the bear to leave.

The crew returned the next day and found the bear had left the cave. With the coast clear, a team of firefighters descended down into the cave and found Charlie. They attached a harness to the dog and brought up back up to safety. Charlie reportedly was “quickly reunited with his happy owner.”

According to the fire crew, Charlie had been in the cave for around three days and was “dehydrated and hungry,” but generally in fair shape.

Coincidentally, the same rescue squad freed another dog named Storm from a cave last year; the dog is Charlie’s “cousin,” according to the department. It appears that it runs in the family; perhaps, these canines will be secure in the future.



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