It was a mix of quick thinking and borrowed mountaineering equipment.
close up of a black, brown and white dog in a kennel
Credit: Courtesy of Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region

Jessie Lee, believed to be an Australian cattle dog mix, had gone missing for about two weeks from her home in the Colorado Springs, Colo., area. Thankfully, though, she was found only two blocks from her home. 

That was the good news. The bad news? She was stuck on a ledge 150 feet above Fountain Creek. Not ideal! 

Thankfully, some animal law enforcement officers from the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region arrived at the scene Dec. 1. And with some borrowed mountaineering supplies, they were able to extract Jessie Lee to safety. 

"We didn't know how long she was going to stay up there on her own," Cody Costra, spokesman for the humane society, tells Daily Paws. 

As described on the humane society's Facebook page, Officers Elizabeth Barker and Evan Johnson arrived at the creek after a local business owner had seen what he thought was an animal on the cliff. Using binoculars, the officers could see Jessie Lee. 

A man living nearby offered up his rappelling rope and mountaineering harness, and it was Barker who tied the rope to a fence post and lowered herself to the dog. Once she was level with the pup, an excited Jessie Lee started to crawl toward her as the ground beneath her shifted. Barker was able to use a catchpole, supplied by Johnson, to make sure she would lose Jessie Lee if the ground beneath her crumbled away. 

Once Barker had the dog, the officers used more rope to make her a harness, and then Johnson pulled them both up to safety—a successful, quick-thinking rescue. 

"They realized how urgent the situation was," Costra says.

Jessie Lee was microchipped and was wearing an ID tag, so the humane society easily tracked her owners down. They were "very excited" to reunite with their beloved dog and had spent the previous two weeks searching for her, Costra says. 

So if we still need to persuade you to microchip your dog, let this be a lesson!