Australian woman says dolphins saved her and her dog from drowning

By David Ferguson
Tuesday, March 5, 2013 12:13 EDT
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Karyn Gitsham via screencap
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A woman who fell from a cliff into the sea while trying to rescue her dog said Tuesday that a pod of dolphins saved her life. According to Perth’s Channel 7 News, Karyn Gitsham was walking her dogs on the beach at Carrickalinga, on South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula, as she does every morning, when one of them got into trouble.

Ramsey, a 5-year-old Cocker Spaniel, ran into the water chasing seagulls, but began to struggle against the tide and couldn’t make it back to shore. Gitsham followed him along the shoreline, scrambling up a cliff face to keep him in sight.

Then, the retired police officer lost her footing.

“I just remember falling and I’m in the water and the waves were just pounding me up against the rocks and I could see him out there trying to get back in,” she said.

Dog and owner struggled to stay afloat as help arrived from an unexpected quarter.

“I remember going under and coming back up I saw a fin, and I saw him, and thought ‘Oh great, it’s a shark,’” she said. “And then I saw another fin then I realised they were dolphins. These dolphins just formed this horseshoe and were guiding him in, pushing him in.”

Soon enough, Gitsham herself was being herded toward shore by the ring of dolphins.

“The dolphins came around me and pushed me into a massive, big boulder,” she said.

Gitsham described the rescue as miraculous, but insisted that she won’t be taking risks with the dogs’ safety in the future. From now on, she said, both dogs will take their morning walks on leashes.

Watch video about this story, embedded below via Channel 7 News:

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
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