Guide dog rescue brings joy to owner

Marong Fire Brigade had to think outside the box when they were called to an unusual job on Tuesday (23 October) after guide dog Chime got stuck under a house she was visiting.


Owner Lynda Christensen, who became vision impaired about four years ago and got Chime 2.5 years ago, said she had been visiting a friend in Marong at the time of the incident.

"She wasn't working so she was just being a dog, playing with my friend's Jack Russell who can fit under the house," Lynda said.

"Because she's big, she got stuck. At first we didn't know where she had gone, but then we could hear her crying from under the house.

"We didn't know what on earth to do. We're both 70 so we couldn't get in under the house."

Marong firefighter Alex Malone said it was an unusual job for the brigade, but there was no hesitation about turning out to help.

"We don't do something like this very often as firefighters, but a lot of us are farmers and pretty practical so we just worked out a way to get her out," Alex said.

"Scott, who went under to help her, tried to dig her out but she wouldn't come out that way so he had to coax her around to the front of the house where she could get out."

Firefighters Alex Malone, left, and Lt Hugh Wallace were part of the Marong CFA crew who turned out to help Lynda Christensen's guide dog Chime when she got stuck under a friend's house.

Lynda and Chime, who live in Linton, were excited to be reunited.

"It was a huge relief, believe me. I'm very grateful to the guys," Lynda said.

"She's worth her weight in gold. She's not just a pet, she's my eyes."

According to Guide Dogs Victoria, where Chime was trained, it takes two years and more than $50,000 to breed, raise, train and match a suitable guide dog with a person with low vision.

Author: Liselotte Geary