Local fishing guide pulls off heroic rescue of 38 dogs treading water

A local fishing guide was dubbed a hero after a decision to act resulted in nearly 40 dogs being rescued from drowning.

State Farm may boast of being there when their customers are in need, but for agents Bob Gist of Arkansas and Brad Carlisle of Tennessee, their fishing guide Jordan Crestman deserved all the credit for being “like a good neighbor.”

Word of the rescue of 38 hunting dogs out on Grenada Lake in Mississippi earlier in June had Gist recounting the tale to Fox News Digital as he explained, “We go about a half mile or so from where we were to another place and we start fishing, and pretty soon we can hear some dogs barking.”

“Pretty soon we saw some dogs on the horizon in the water,” he detailed. “We went on fishing for about 10 or 15 minutes, and Jordan said, ‘Hey guys, if you don’t mind, we really need to go check on those dogs because they’re way out there in that water.”

The insurance agent explained how he’d later learned that the dogs, seen with numbers painted on their sides, were participating in an annual fox run when they’d changed course to go after a deer.

“A deer can swim the Mississippi River, and those dogs are not going to catch a deer in the water,” Gist had told the Associated Press. “There were dogs everywhere. They were kind of swimming in circles and didn’t know which direction to go.”

“We’re just flabbergasted because it’s dogs everywhere, and they’re all going in different directions because they can no longer see the bank on either side,” he added to Fox News Digital. “And they’re all hunting dogs — we can clearly see that because they have expensive GPS radio collars on them.”

“We just immediately started calling dogs on the boat, you know, grabbed their collar and put them in the [bass] boat,” he’d said as between 25 and 27 had been fished out of the lake on their first effort.

Two more trips were needed to retrieve the remaining dogs and Gist noted that a member of the hunting party came aboard to guide their boat using the trackers on the dogs. It was his belief that the last few dogs had been picked up over a mile from the bank.

“They were on the verge of drowning because now they had been treading water for an hour,” he told Fox News Digital. “We got back over to the ramp with that last bunch of dogs…[and] we were having to drag them out of the boat because they didn’t want to get out of our boat. They were scared they were going back to the water. It was terrible.”

Gist further lauded his guide who’d reportedly refused a reward from the owner of the dogs after the rescue. “If Brad and I had been there in a boat by ourselves, we wouldn’t have known anything was wrong, but that 20-something-year-old kid — I’m 61, so I’m calling him a kid — he knew something needed to be done.”

“That kid had the presence of mind to know, ‘If we don’t do something, there’s going to be 38 dead dogs here.’ And he saved them,” added the insurance agent. “I mean we all pulled them in, but that kid is the hero here.”

Kevin Haggerty

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