Rescuers from Rockdale Fire and Rescue and Animal Control gather around the dog Leslie they just rescued Saturday from the well on her family's property in north Rockdale County. Leslie was trapped in the well for seven days. She is held by her owner, Melissa Johnson.
CONYERS -- This dog's tale ended happily when Rockdale County fire fighters and Animal Control officers rescued a dog that had been trapped in a well for a week in north Rockdale County.
Leslie, a rescued Rottweiler-Labrador mix, was in good shape and recovered quickly from her experience Saturday, Dec. 3, in an old well behind a barn on her family's property off of Irwin Bridge Road and Hightower Trail.
Leslie's owner Melissa Johnson said Leslie had always been allowed to go outside for the year and a half since she was rescued and that Leslie always stayed close to the house, so it was unusual that she did not return when called on Saturday, Nov. 26,
"When we found her missing, it scared us because she's always stayed by the house and we always knew where she was," she said.
Leslie was missing a week. On Saturday, Johnson returned home from Georgia College and State University and searched the property again with her father. They looked around an old barn where her great-grandfather once farmed adjacent to their property.
"We decided to peek into the well and my dad found her in there," Johnson said. "We were excited and upset. It was a big rush of emotions. I ran to my house and found all the food and water I could find and lowered down into the well."
The Johnsons called 911 and soon, Rockdale County Animal Care and Control and units with the Rockdale County Department of Fire and Rescue arrived. Deputy Fire Chief Dan Morgan said a fire fighter used a 20-foot ladder to go down to rescue Leslie. The dog was pulled up using a harness typically used to rescue people.
Morgan added that the well was hand dug years ago and had a cover on top. It appeared that Leslie walked across the top and the top gave way and she fell in.
"The guys thought it was interesting and the fire fighters worked and asked each other, 'How can we modify this and fix the problem.' Something that fire fighters do," Morgan said.
Amazingly, Leslie looked good after seven days without food or water. Johnson said her concern was getting her fed, but Leslie needed something else.
"She's desperately more excited about attention than food. When she came out of that well, she came right to me and then she went to every family member. I mean, I was trying to give her food; she wouldn't take it. She wanted to see us and get some petting. She didn't want that food yet."