Dog falls off side of Brean Down

Burnham Coastguard Rescue Team.

Burnham Coastguard Rescue Team. - Credit: Burnham Coastguard Rescue Team

A dog owner's ‘momentary lapse in judgement' almost cost her pet's life after it fell off the side of a Somerset landmark.

Burnham Coastguard was called to the scene after a woman lost her dog over the side of Brean Down today (Tuesday) at 11.20am.

A Weston RNLI lifeboat was then launched to assist in the search at the base of the Downs, but a coastguard station officer was first to arrive in the area and spotted the distressed lady with her dog. 

Following the incident, the coastguard is urging people to keep their dogs on a lead while on high ground.  

The rescue service is also reminding people that self-rescuing their dog is ‘extremely dangerous’ and if an incident occurs, dial 999 and ask for the coastguard immediately.  

Its spokesman said: “Unfortunately, we find many people are still letting their dogs off of leads while on the top of Brean Down. 

“This is a huge risk no matter how well you think your dog is trained. The top of Brean Down is quite expansive and looks safe but the steep slopes, wet ground and the speed a dog moves combine to make it a very dangerous place for a dog off its lead. 

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“We also remind anyone that self-rescuing your dog is extremely dangerous and could end up with even worse consequences, please don't put yourself or your furry loved ones at risk. 

“We are trained to deal with these situations safely, we don't want anyone to end up injured or worse, trying to scale down wet and slippery cliffs to rescue their dog. 

“The best thing you can do is keep them on a lead. If anything does happen, immediately dial 999 and ask for the coastguards. Give as much information as possible and await our arrival. 

“Please stay safe, keep your dogs on leads while on high ground and continue to follow guidelines.” 

After the station officer’s brief conversation with the lady at the scene, they said she was ‘very apologetic’ and admitted she read the signs and had seen local reports of these types of incidents happening before. 

The rescue service said it was a ‘momentary lapse in judgement’ that ‘ultimately almost cost her her fur baby’. 

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