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Crew rescues Labrador puppy from steep canyon

May 22, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
A 10-month-old puppy caused quite a commotion Saturday. Pepper got away from his family while they were hiking through Azusa Canyon in the Angeles National Forest. A 16-year-old boy went after Pepper, and that's when things got dangerous.The dog's teenage owner was hoisted to safety by the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department's helicopter.

It all started when 10-month-old Pepper took a dip in the San Gabriel River. The black lab wound up on the other side of the river from its owners.

The boy went after Pepper, but when they tried to climb out of the canyon, they both got trapped on a steep hillside.

The teen was reunited with his mother after that airlift, but the dog ran back down to the rushing river.

The all-volunteer San Dimas Mountain Rescue Team was called in to make the rescue.

Pepper's family watched anxiously from Highway 39 as the dog at times appeared to be heading back into the river.

Team members Steve White and Carlos Perez hiked 300 feet down the steep and dangerous hillside to save the dog.

The family was able to reunite with Pepper 300 feet back up the cliff.

There were hugs, kisses, wagging tails and thanks all around.


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