A PET dog leapt into ice-cold docks in an apparent attempt to rescue its suicidal owner early today.
A middle-aged man jumped in to Methil Docks in Fife just after 5am as the air temperature hovered just above freezing.
Firefighters reported that the man’s Japanese Akita – a breed usually associated with aggression – jumped in after him.
The dog then stayed by the man’s side until rescuers were able to pull them both to safety.
The man was taken for treatment to a nearby hospital and the loyal dog was handed over the the man’s family.
The early morning rescue was a massive operation that included the fire brigade, police, ambulance and a specialist coastguard cliff rescue team.
A rescue insider said: “We don’t really know the circumstances surrounding this but we believe it was an attempted suicide – it looks like the dog tried to stop it.”
A Fife Fire and Rescue Service spokeswoman said: “We were called to a water rescue at the docks in Methil at 5.09am.
“A middle-aged man and a Japanese Akita were rescued from the water. The male was in the water first and the dog jumped in after him.
“Line rescue gear and water rescue teams were present – the man was taken to hospital by ambulance and we believe the police would have found alternative care for the dog.”
A Scottish Ambulance spokeswoman said: “The man was hanging onto the dock walls and was taken to Kirkcaldy Victoria.
“We don’t know about the condition of either the dog or the man.”
A Fife Police spokesman confirmed the man “was taken to hospital” and that the dog had “been given back to the family” of the man.