Monday, December 10, 2007
Are Newfoundlands Smart?
FARMINGVILLE, N.Y. (CBS) ― "A Long Island dog-turned-MacGyver is making Lassie look like any other ordinary pooch. That's because Jackson, the massive 150-pound Newfoundland, somehow escaped harm during a house fire by jumping into a bathtub, pulling the curtain closed, and using the drain to breathe fresh air.
Jackson's owner, Debbie Credidio, nearly lost her best friend when her Farmingville home caught on fire while her 74-year-old mother, Marcia Kaye, was there.
'I said, 'The dog's in the house, but I couldn't get to where the dog was', Kaye told CBS 2.
The rest of the family was at work, but frantically rushed home to a chaotic scene. 'I came here, and the house was in flames full of smoke. I tried to get dog out, calling him -- I honestly didn't think the dog had a chance', said James Credidio.
Farmingville firefighters quickly arrived and made a final sweep through the house, and that's when they found Jackson in the bathtub.
'How he ever decided to go to where he went, it's amazing he did the right thing at the right time', said Fire Commissioner Norman Neill.
Firefighters were astounded to see that the dog somehow figured out that the drain would allow him to breathe.
'He's a big dog, about a 150-pound Newfoundland, and how he got in there and pulled the curtain closed -- it's the smartest thing. I don't know what kind of training he had', joked firefighter Jerry Curtin.
Whatever it was, Jackson's training was textbook -- right out of the firefighter's manual. A common mantra says to duck below the smoke if you run out of oxygen and find fresh air wherever you can. Jackson was literally inside the bathtub, sucking the air out of the drainpipe, an 'old school thing' that a firefighter would do.
'An hour later they pulled the dog out and it was like a miracle', James Credidio said.
The Credidios were more than thrilled to have their playful pal alive and well, even though the fire did its damage and the family had already just gone through tough times.
'If we would have lost him, it would have been like losing another piece of our family. We lost our dad last year, he was his best friend', said Jessica Credidio.
After losing her husband, Debbie Credidio says Jackson has just brought a little bit of happiness back into her life. 'He's a smart dog, he went in bathtub and sniffed the drain and made it out alive. I love my dog', she said.
Word is spreading around the Farmingville community about Jackson's intelligence. The entire neighborhood hopes to honor the heroic pooch with an award for 'valor under duress'."
Check out the video at wcbstv.com ("Miracle: Dog Uses Bath Drain To Breath Amid Fire")
Now the next time someone says that Newfies aren't smart, show 'em you know better.
Satchel & Andrew