A New York dog has found his way back home after swimming across the Hudson River.
The Edgewater Fire Department reports that a 6-month-old mixed breed dog named Bear was found under a pier at Independence Harbor early on Tuesday morning after a call came in about a dod barking in the water.
“The two guys in the water just stayed behind him so he would come toward the boat and he sat there, waited patiently, I grabbed him by the back of the head and put him in the back of the boat,” firefighter Tom Quinton told ABC7.
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The dog’s owner, Ellen Wolpin, expressed to The New York Post that her family had just purchased Bear last week for their 20-year-old son Zack who has special needs, and were in the process of buying him a harness when he escaped and ran down the Upper East Side on 86th Street and jumped in the water near 110th Street.
Although Bear’s breed — a cross between a Leonberger Bernese and a Bernese Mountain dog —naturally thrives in cold weather, his family was afraid that he was gone for good after patrol boats had no luck finding him that day.
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“He did like a full triathlon almost,” she told The Post. “Because he ran about a mile-and-a-half and then swam about a mile.”
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“On Sunday, I was hoping that I would get a phone call from somebody and then come Monday there’s no way this dog survived and then at 5 o’ clock this morning I got a phone call from the Edgewater Police Department that they had him,” she added.
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After reuniting around 6:30 AM on Tuesday, Wolpin says they gave Bear a bath, took him to get a check-up at the vet, and bought various extra dog harnesses, to make sure the situation does not happen again.
She labeled it a Christmas miracle, expressing that Bear has “had tons of treats and hugs” after their reunion.