Georgia dog saved from sewer hole, reunited with owner


CLAYTON, Ga. — A dog that fell into a 10-foot-deep sewer hole in the northeast Georgia mountains survived for nearly three weeks on raw sewage, rain water and vegetation before being rescued, authorities said.

Phoebe, a Labrador retriever mix, lost nearly half of her body weight in the ordeal, police in Clayton said.

The dog’s owner, Steve Carruth, said Friday that he spent days searching for Phoebe after she went missing from his home on Screamer Mountain.

He feared a bear might have got­ten her and had all but given up hope of finding her alive.

On Sunday, a passer-by heard growling from an open manhole, spotted the dog and called police, CBS Atlanta reported.

Clayton police Sgt. Tim Brown and Officer Richard Hunter arrived and eventually were able to use a pole to bring the dog to the surface.

The dog spent the night with City Manager Cissy Henry, a big dog lover, as they tried to find the owner, Carruth said.

Phoebe was reunited with Carruth this week after city workers posted a photo of the dog at the Rabun Town Crier, an online site. As soon as Carruth heard a dog had been found and saw the photo, he raced over to the town’s offices.

“The dog just bolted to me and licked me for like 10 minutes,” Carruth said. “It’s truly a miracle.”