German Shepherd treads water for 11 hours, helps police rescue owner after boat sinks

(WHDH) — A German Shepherd named Heidi managed to tread water for eleven hours after her owner’s boat sank and she was able to catch the attention of a fisherman, prompting a full-scale search for the missing skipper, officials said.

The fisherman spotted Heidi drifting in Moreton Bay off Queensland, Australia, around 6 a.m. on Thursday, according to the Queensland Police Service. The pup was said to be floating next to various items including a fuel tank, tackle box, and wetsuit.

Heidi was scooped up and Brisbane Water Police were notified of the discovery. Rescue crews sprung into action, deploying a helicopter, four vessels, and a jet ski unit in an effort to track down the pup’s missing 63-year-old owner.

After a three hour search, officials found the man clinging to a sunken vessel near the Brisbane boat passage around 10:30 a.m. He was taken to the hospital with injuries that were not considered serious.

Police gave Heidi some food and let her rest in an air-conditioned office while her owner recovered.

Heidi and her owner were later reunited in what was a touching moment.

Queensland Police Service

“Thankfully there was a happy ending to this search and Heidi was able to be our honorary PD for the day,” police said in a news release.

It’s not clear what caused the boat to overturn.

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