Metro-East News

Dog rescued from Fairview Heights well; stuck 15 feet down

First responders are being credited with saving the life of a dog that fell into a well near Fairview Heights.

The French Village Fire Department got a call about 6 p.m. Monday about the dog, discovered in a well in the 9100 block of Forest Drive.

When firefighters and Fairview Heights police officers arrived at the scene, they found the dog, a pit bull mix named Rabbit, about 15 feet deep in the well, hanging onto a log.

French Village Fire Department Chief Al LaPointe said the dog was under the care of a dog-sitter when it escaped and ended up in the well.

“A homeowner who was watching a friend’s dog stated the dog fell into a cistern,” LaPointe said. “The cistern was located deep in the woods behind the homeowner’s house, approximately 200 feet.”

Firefighters couldn’t get to the animal, so they called in the St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency’s Technical Rescue Team for assistance.

Firefighters monitored the air in the well while they waited for the rescue crew to arrive. They found the oxygen level was low and the amount of hydrogen sulfide was dangerously high.

When they finally managed to pull out the dog it was lethargic and wet. It was given oxygen and wrapped in blankets before being taken to an emergency pet hospital in Collinsville for examination.

LaPointe said Rabbit responded well to oxygen.

There were no specifics released about the animal’s condition. But the dog appeared to be in good health, LaPointe said.

Scott Wuerz