Mono searchers rescue dog from Owens River Gorge |

Mono searchers rescue dog from Owens River Gorge

Sal the dog is hauled up the slope of the Owens River Gorge on Oct. 17.
Mono County Sheriff’s Office

A husky-German shepherd mix named Sal is expected to make a full recovery after he was rescued last weekend from the bottom of the Owens River Gorge.

The Mono County Sheriff’s Office received a 3 p.m. Oct. 17 call from 11-year-old Sal’s owner saying the dog hurt his back leg.

“Sal was stuck at the bottom of the gorge, unable to walk, let alone ascend the steep 800-foot rocky, loose slope,” according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Mono Animal Control Officers Malinda Huggans and Lina Bullington realized they would not be able to haul the 80-pound dog up the slope and called for help from Mono County’s Search and Rescue Team.

Searchers arrived to find Sal sitting patiently in the reeds of the river. It was clear the dog would have to be carried out of the gorge.

Searchers, Huggans and Sal’s owner wrapped up Sal and loaded him into a sling. The sun had set so the climb was done in the dark by the light of headlamps and flashlights.

About three-quarters of the way up the slope, the team changed to a litter and rope the rest of the way.

Sal’s owner said the veterinarian told him Sal suffered from a sprained leg, bruising and some internal bleeding.

Mono County’s Search and Rescue team volunteered 68 total hours to the rescue.