A little pug is lucky to be alive after she took a tumble while playing in her owner’s garden and fell down a 130ft deep well.
Kiki was miraculously unhurt despite tumbling down the 40m deep well, and landing in mud at the bottom.
Kent firefighters were called to help save the stricken dog, after her owners realised they were unable to fit down the narrow shaft – so they used tactics from The Silence of the Lambs.
Ingenious firefighters rescue the three-year-old pug by lowering a basket filled with treats to the bottom of the well, that Kiki happily climbed into.
It was compared to a scene from the famous horror film when abductor Buffalo Bill lowers a basket of lotion to a woman he has trapped in a well and a dog is later rescued from the pit in a basket.
The Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) crew pulled Kiki to safety from the bottom of the well in her owners’ back garden on Tuesday evening in Rainham, Kent.
A spokesperson joked: “It is not the same as Silence of the Lambs but it has got some vague parallels with the well.”
The three-year-old pooch jumped straight out of the basket when she reached the top and was handed over to her owners who put her in the shower to get cleaned up.
Crew Manager Graham Porter said: “When we arrived Kiki was quiet at the bottom of the well, and her owners had lowered a torch into the well so they could see her.
“We were relieved when we heard her make some noise in response to her owner calling her name.
“She stayed nice and still as she was pulled up in the bag, and at the top she jumped straight out and ran into the house before running around the garden.
“It was definitely an interesting rescue and we’re really pleased we managed to reach Kiki safely.
“It’s a miracle that she didn’t appear to have any injuries after falling that far, but she seemed okay and enjoyed a cuddle with the crew post rescue…all’s well that ends well.”
One fire engine and four crew were called to the countryside address at 8pm on Tuesday.
After assessing the well, firefighters deemed it too dangerous to enter and had to come up with an alternative rescue technique to save the much loved family pug.
They tied ropes to the handles of large empty kit bag, filled it with wet dog food, and lowered it into the well, taking all necessary safety precautions for working at height.
Kiki was pulled to safety within 45 minutes safe and well and her owners plan to take her to the vet to get checked over.
A KFRS spokesperson added: “Kiki couldn’t resist the snacks and as planned she climbed into the bag for a feast.
“Two firefighters very carefully hauled the bag to the top of the well using ropes.
“The crew expected her to have some nasty injuries, but to their surprise she bounced straight out of the bag and ran around the garden – seemingly injury free.
“It’s presumed Kiki fell down the well and the well was in the back garden of the property where the dog lives.”