Real-life US 'Lassie' dog leads police to owner's crashed car, Latest World News - The New Paper

Real-life US 'Lassie' dog leads police to owner's crashed car

WASHINGTON (AFP) - A dog in New Hampshire was hailed as a real-life "Lassie" on Tuesday (Jan 4) after leading police to the scene of a serious car crash that had left her owner injured and suffering from hypothermia.

Tinsley, which is of a breed known as shiloh shepherd, ran down a highway on the New Hampshire border with Vermont late on Monday, prompting motorists to alert the highway patrol.

When police officers spotted the one-year-old dog and tried to catch it, she kept running and led them into Vermont, where the officers spotted a gap in a guard rail and discovered a badly damaged pickup truck that had rolled over.

Two people, one of whom was Tinsley's owner, had been thrown from the vehicle and were already suffering from the onset of hypothermia.

"It quickly became apparent that Tinsley led (law enforcement) to the crash site and injured occupants," New Hampshire police said on their Facebook page.

New Hampshire police officer Daniel Baldassarre told local news channel WCVB: "They could tell the dog was trying to show them something because she kept trying to get away from them but didn't run away totally... It was kind of, 'follow me, follow me'."

He added that the officers went with the dog and saw the damaged guard rail. When they looked down to where the dog was looking at, they were almost in disbelief, he said.

"I kind of compare it to, for those who remember, a real-life 'Lassie' story, where the people are in distress and the dog goes and gets help and brings them right to where the person is."

As emergency rescue workers began their medical care of the injured, the dog "sat there nice and calm right next to its owner", said Captain Jack Hedges of the Hartford fire department.

The dog's owner, Mr Cam Laundry, was not seriously hurt in the crash, and said Tinsley would be rewarded with venison for showing such intelligence and devotion.

"She's my little guardian angel," he told WCVB. "It's a miracle that she had that kind of intelligence to do what she did."