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IFD crews rescue dog trapped overnight in gopher hole

Video provided by Indianapolis Fire Department.

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Firefighters worked for hours on Friday to rescue a dog stuck for nearly 24 hours in a collapsed gopher hole.

Carly Weidman and Jordan Updike, the owners of Penny, a 7-year-old red miniature pinscher, noticed the dog was missing around 5 p.m. Thursday at their home on South Garfield Drive, near Garfield Park. After searching the dog’s “usual explorer hideouts — to no avail,” Updike heard the dog whimpering just before midnight near their detached shed, according to IFD.

After determining the dog had probably tunneled through a gopher hole and gotten stuck under a concrete slab near the neighbor’s shed, Penny’s owners spent hours trying to get the dog to come out using salmon and sausage, “her favorite foods.” That didn’t worked.

Around 8 a.m. Friday, Updike went to IFD Station 29 near Garfield Park and explained the situation to firefighters, who told him to contact Indianapolis Animal Care Services. IACS assessed Penny’s situation and requested help from IFD.

Crews from IFD’s Special Operations Division brought a “360 First Look Rescue Camera,” along with a member of Indiana Task Force 1 who was trained on how to use it. That’s how firefighters located Penny around 2:15 p.m. The dog was 2 feet below the concrete slab and 5 feet from the opening of the gopher hole. Crews dug out the area for three hours and determined the gopher hole had collapsed behind Penny and was blocking the dog from escaping on its own.

The 360 camera helped crews watch Penny as they worked. The dog was rescued at 3:44 p.m., pulled out of the dirt and into its owners’ care.

Weidman thanked firefighters and said she’d make sure Penny didn’t find her way into any more gopher holes.