A WOMAN is trying to hunt down a West Kilbride couple to thank them after they helped rescue her 14-year-old spaniel from swimming out to sea.

Fiona McDonald had been walking her two Springers, Bruno and Buddy, at Seamill beach at Thursday lunchtime on June 24. They both love to swim, and as they enjoyed the quiet beach, Bruno decided he wanted to swim out further than usually.

Fiona told the Herald: “My son said ‘mum, he is going quite far out’ – and I looked and I couldn’t even see him.

“I start panicking, screaming, and I was crying on the beach.

“This couple came along, and she phoned the coastguard who told us to keep shouting his name.

“I was in such a state, she kept shouting for me, I don’t know how she had any voice left.

“It felt like hours, it was probably about an hour, he was away past the rocks that you can see from Seamill beach.

“We thought he might try and go up on the rocks, but he’s got arthritis in both his back legs so wouldn’t be able to get himself up, as I have to lift him out the car.”

“Her partner went to meet the coastguard at the carpark, the coastguard came, and he started to swim back.

“My son had started to go into the water to get him, but we had to pull him out not to be so silly to do that.

“The dog is a better swimmer than my son.

“The dog came back in, and my son lifted him up. His tail was going like crazy like ‘what’s wrong?’

“I never got her name, I don’t know what I would have done if she hadn’t been there. I want to thank them both for their help that day.

“If it had been her dog, she’d been the same as me.

“I thought we were losing him. At this point, my other dog Buddy is barking because nobody was was throwing their ball.”

Kevin Paterson, from the Ardrossan Coastguard Rescue Team, said: “We want everyone to enjoy the coast this summer and remember it for all the right reasons – not the wrong ones.

“Dogs love exploring the coast and being in the water but we would always advise to keep your dog on a lead if you are walking near to cliff edges or fast flowing water.

“As difficult as it may be, if your dog falls into water or gets stuck in mud, don’t go in after them as there’s a chance you may get into trouble too. Most dogs ultimately end up getting backout by themselves but if you’re four-legged friend gets into difficultly when at the coast please keep yourself safe and dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.”

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