Exhausted Dog Swimming 135 Miles Out at Sea Gets Rescued, It’s a Puzzle How It Got There

May 14, 2019 Updated: May 22, 2019

How did this cute pooch find itself swimming out in the middle of the vast ocean—alive but exhausted, yet without a soul in sight?

When workers on an oil rig 135 miles out from the shores in the Gulf of Thailand spotted a dog swimming in the ocean on April 12, they couldn’t believe their eyes. There below was a dog paddling towards them, just managing to keep its head above the water. As they called out to the poor canine, she managed to climb onto the rusty metal bars beneath the rig.

One worker on the rig, Khon Vitisak, who was keen to save the young dog, said: “We found her trying to swim towards our rig, which is about 135 miles from the shore. Thankfully the sea was quite still because the wind was calm,” reported The Daily Mail.

It is a mystery how the dog survived out in the ocean, or how it got there in the first place. “We just saw her small head but if the ripples were bigger, I think we probably wouldn’t have noticed her at all,” said Vitisak.

Getting her from the base of the rig onto the platform was not without difficulties.

“After she made it onto the bars below the rig she didn’t cry or bark at all. We looked for a way to help her and in the end, decided to use the rope to tie around her body to lift her up,” Vitisak said.

Although the dog was stressed and dehydrated, the men did a good job of nursing her back to health.

“When we first took her onboard her [sic] she was depressed and tired from being in the water for a long time . She had lost her body water,” said Vitisak. “When he gave her water and minerals her symptoms improved. She started sitting up and walking normally.”

The dog slept on the rig for two nights, while the men constructed a special metal cage to enable her to be lifted by crane to a passing vessel. They had radioed for help, and a nearby tanker was able to pick her up.

Animal charity Watchdog Thailand took her under their care, and she was given the name “Boonrod,” which means “making a spiritual donation for good luck in the future,” in Thai.

A spokesperson for Watchdog Thailand said: “The boat arrived at 10am and the dog was in good spirits. We took her to the vets to be checked and she was found to be healthy.”

“Everybody who played a part in co-coordinating the rescue has done a brilliant job.”

Vitisak has inquired about Boonrod: “I hope to adopt her as a pet. I am looking forward to spending many happy years together with her.”

“We have checked on Boonrod again this evening and she is fine. She has a lot of energy.”

But the mystery remains as to how Boonrod was found swimming 135 miles out at sea.

“We still don’t know how she was in the water 220km from the shore. It’s a miracle that we found her,” said Vitisak.

According to the Bangkok Post, it is believed Boonrod had fallen from a fishing trawler.

Boonrod is one lucky dog, who has found a forever home with Vitisak Payalaw—the man who had climbed down from the oil rig to first help the dog.

“Boonrod is fine. My mom gave him a bath after he arrived at his new home. He is friends with everybody in the house,” Vitisak told Bangkok Post.

“My desire is to see him live a normal life.“

Photo Credit: AP | Vitisak Payalaw

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