Complete strangers rescue two dogs from ravine

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HONOLULU (KHON2) — Two dogs are back home safe with their owners after being gone for an entire week.

On Sunday, February 9, Jacqueline Gonzalez was hiking the Kalawahine trail when she heard the cries for help.

“We’re hearing a dog whimpering and I’m immediately heartbroken,” Gonzalez said. “I immediately thought about my puppy,” she explained. “I know that if he were lost or in distress,” Gonzalez added, “I would move mountains to save him.”

Gonzalez said her friend got as close as he could to the whimpering dogs, but they soon realized they needed professional help to rescue them.

“They [were] 300 feet up above the trail, and 20 feet down in a ravine,” Gonzalez explained.

Once the two realized they wouldn’t be able to get the dogs themselves, they called for help.

Gonzalez called police, the fire department, and even local search and rescue groups on Oahu.

“The fire department wouldn’t send a rescue team because we were not the owners,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez called everyone she could think of but was unsuccessful. Frustrated, yet more determined than ever, she took to social media.

On Monday, Feb. 10th, she got in touch with a man on Maui, not just with the skill and equipment to rescue the dogs, but with a huge heart.

“I called him immediately and said, ‘Are you serious? You’re going to come here?'” Gonzalez said.

Christopher Berquist and his girlfriend, Jenny Miller, flew out that same day on their own dime.

Miller works for the Maui Humane Society. Berquist is an experienced search and rescuer. He’s known for helping rescue Amanda Eller on Maui.

Berquist said their love for dogs made the decision a no-brainer.

“The more we learn about it, and the better we get at it, the more of a no brainer it is to keep helping folks,” Berquist said about why he volunteers his time to help others. “I mean who can say no to those two pups, you know,” he said.

Once the dogs were safe, the group took them to the Hawaiian Humane Society.

Within hours, the two dogs were back home with their owners who told KHON2 that they had been searching desperately for Cowboy and Akamai for the last week.

“It was the happiest day for us and the dogs. I send all my blessings to that person that rescued our dogs,” Kana and Lei Miguel said in a statement.

Kana and Lei Miguel add that Cowboy and Akamai are doing well and are just happy to be home.


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