Boater Hailed A Hero After Jumping In To Save Tiny Terrier Stranded In Ocean

Oct 28, 2021 by apost team

Off the coast of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Dylan Berian and his friends were boating this October when Berian spotted something unusual in the water — a tiny terrier fighting to stay afloat in the middle of the Atlantic ocean.

Berian immediately sprung into action, jumping into the water with his clothes on to save the dog. Once he got ahold of the terrier, Berian and his friends were able to get the dog onto their boat and read his collar. The terrier’s name is Zuko, and thanks to Berian’s brave and selfless act, he would soon be reunited with his owner, Anais Avila.

“The dog warmed up to us instantly. As soon as he got on the boat, he was shaking, but after about five minutes, the dog calmed down and seemed quite happy to be on a stable boat rather than getting drowned by waves,” Berian told Inside Edition.

According to Avila, she and her family were on the water with Zuko when the dog suddenly disappeared. 

“He was jumping up and down around in the back trying to bite the crashing waves. Zuko must have jumped over or fell over,” Avila told Inside Edition.

“I’m so grateful for them because they saved me from such a huge heartbreak.”

Inside Edition reports that since Zuko’s rescue, the dog is doing fine.

A video of the dog’s rescue has spread across the internet and on YouTube since the story broke in late October. On YouTube, a clip of Berian swimming to save Zuko has accumulated more than 200,000 views and 1,000 comments in less than a week.

Be sure to reach the end of this article to see the full video :-) 

Many viewers criticized Zuko’s owner for her reaction to her dog’s disappearance and her disregard for his safety.

“I never would have left the water until I found my dog. She said nothing about how long they looked for him.... Just that they noticed he was gone,” one user commented.

“I'm happy they got him back, but they should've been keeping a better eye on him. If that was my dog, I wouldn't let him out of my sight, and I'd hold into him whenever the boat was going fast, so he wouldn't go overboard,” another viewer wrote.

Many YouTubers also noted that Zuko should have been wearing a life jacket.

The United States Coast Guard agrees. Beyond equipping your dog with a life jacket, Wayne Stacey of the Coast Guard’s boating safety division recommends that pet owners ask themselves a few key questions, namely: “How well does the dog swim? How cold is the water? How long will it take to turn the boat around to retrieve the dog if it falls overboard? Will the dog be easy to spot in the water? How will it get back into the boat?”

Additionally, it’s important to keep pets restrained while they are in the boat — even if they are wearing a life jacket.

“When the boat is underway, keep the dog safely restrained,” Stacey writes. “A leash attached to a collar can present a choking hazard if a dog bolts overboard, but a dog life jacket, with a D-ring on back for attaching to a leash, can do dual-duty as a harness, providing a reliable restraint for an excitable pet.”

What do you think of this story? Should the owner have been more careful? Let us know — and be sure to pass this story on to others. 

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