British Basset Hound Saves Own Life by Dialing 999

Two-year-old George unwittingly calls for help.

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British Basset Hound Saves Own Life by Dialing 999
The jowls that got in the way... Basset Hound George almost strangled himself with the phone cord, but luckily rang the police with his paws. (Photo: The Sun)

The emergency operator heard heavy breathing over the line, and fearing someone had collapsed or been attacked, called the police. According to The Sun, cops then dashed to the South Hiendley, West Yorkshire, home of Steve Brown, his 18-year-old daughter, Lydia, and their Basset Hound George. The Browns were not at home, but before the police could knock down their door, neighbor Paul Walker ran over with a key. 

While the police split up and searched the house, it was Paul who found George choking on the phone wire. “He was absolutely terrified and could not free himself,” Walker recalls. “I knew I had to get him free quickly, so I just ripped the wire out. Incredibly, you could see where his paw print was on the phone to ring 999—he literally saved his own life.”

When the police came into the room and realized what had happened, “They burst out laughing.”

Lydia Brown had left Paul a key so he could feed George while she worked a nightshift as a waitress. By the time Lydia returned home, the police had left, and her dog “was looking a little sorry for himself. It is just so lucky that his paw managed to ring 999, otherwise he would have died,” says Brown

Brown claims that George isn’t blessed with naturally quick wits.“We still don’t know how he managed it. He’s not usually very smart,” she says. “He’s really dopey and just likes to chew socks.”