Keith Gilbert, an 81-year-old disabled veteran, was loading his dogs into his car when his new service dog Rivka, aka “Mouse,” got spooked and ran into the road. The German Shepherd was then struck by a car going about 40 mph in a residential zone.
Seeing your dog get hit by a car is a truly horrifying experience. Gilbert and his daughter Denise also worried Mouse might have a broken back due to the position she was lying in after being struck.
An emotional Gilbert later told King 5 News:
“I thought she was a goner, I really did.”
Dog Lovers And Firefighters To The Rescue
Luckily, Natalie Luke and David Crump happened to be nearby at the time of the accident. They saw the car hit Rivka, and immediately pulled over to help. Luke explained her decision:
“It’s every dog owner’s worst nightmare. I saw the dog get hit by a car, and it flew off of the car and landed on the ground… I pulled over quickly to go help because I’m a dog lover.”
Using a sun shade from Luke’s car, they made a make-shift backboard for Mouse. They used the windshield shade to gently slide Mouse off the busy, dangerous road and begin treating her wounds with a first aid kit.
Soon, Aidan Casey and Bobby Foster from Seattle Fire Station 33 arrived on the scene. They stepped in and offered more resources to treat Mouse’s injuries.
The firefighters commended the neighbors and the dog’s family for their efforts to treat and secure Mouse before they arrived.
“They did a great job of immobilizing the dog and getting her safely out of the road.”
Eventually, Gilbert rushed a secured Rivka to Blue Pearl Veterinary Hospital, where she was saved. Miraculously, her back didn’t break from the accident. Proper procedure probably helped ensure she avoided spinal injury.
Once the veterinary hospital released Mouse, she and Gilbert made a visit to Station 33 to thank her rescuers. Everyone was thrilled to see Rivka/Mouse doing well. Both Mouse and Gilbert were even more thrilled these kind people made this happy reunion possible.
A Thankful Dog Parent And Veteran
Gilbert, not only a disabled veteran, is also battling cancer for the fifth time. Getting choked up, he told King 5 News that he can’t even imagine how much more difficult his life would be without his beloved service dog.
Still, the costs of the dog’s care are getting pretty high. A GoFundMe page for Mouse is most of the way to its $2,000 goal. Contribute to help out a good dog and a veteran who loves her!