A heartwarming video captured the moment a heroic rescue worker saved six frightened dogs in Leland, N.C., locked in an outdoor cage rapidly filling up with Hurricane Florence flood, the Daily Mail reports.
Volunteer rescuer Ryan Nichols, of Longview, Tex., was with his friend, David Rebollar, trying to help people stranded in a church in Leland, when they heard the dogs barking and found them abandoned in their cage and desperately trying to stay above water.
The footage shows the dogs whimper as Nichols approaches them to come to their aid. “The dogs were almost underwater,” the 27-year-old volunteer rescuer told NBC News. “Within an hour, they would have been dead.”
Journalist Marcus DiPaola recorded the moments that the dogs were released and posted the video on Twitter. “Rescued six dogs in Leland, NC, after the owner LEFT THEM locked in an outdoor cage that filled with flood water that was rapidly rising,” DiPaola tweeted.
Rescued six dogs in Leland, NC, after the owner LEFT THEM locked in an outdoor cage that filled with flood water that was rapidly rising.
— Marcus DiPaola (@marcusdipaola) September 16, 2018
After their release, the dogs swam away tails wagging from the cage and reached a green area, which was on much higher ground, before being given food by rescuers.
Many social media users who commented on the post criticized the owners for abandoning the dogs. Nichols said a neighbor told him that the owners were a family with children, including an 8-month-old, that may have had a medical situation and left in a panic when the waters began rising.