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Tails of the City

Man Chooses to Save Dog First, Then Wife From Sinking Yacht

August 8, 2013 8:03am (EDT)
Rosie the dog at Keurbooms Beach two years ago. (Photo via Facebook).
Rosie the dog at Keurbooms Beach two years ago. (Photo via Facebook).

Husbands of the world, if your yacht smashed into a reef along one of the most dangerous parts of the ocean near East London, South Africa, who would you save from the sinking vessel first: your dog or your wife?

If you name is Graham Anley, you choose to rescue your 9 year old Jack Russell Terrier, Rosie, first. Then you go back and grab your wife.

Anley swam Rosie to shore. Afterward he went back for his wife whose safety line was tangled in the yacht’s steering gear, possibly making the situation more desperate.

Anley tells the National Sea Rescue Institute, the volunteer rescue organization that picked up the family, that he, his wife Sheryl and Rosie their dog were wearing life jackets. The dog was wearing one especially made for pooches that contained an emergency strobe light.

The National Sea Rescue Institute reports that all parties are fine.

But Anley appears to be in the doghouse with the public and the media. He is already the bud of jokes and outrage.

Other commentators are more sympathetic to Anley and applaud his actions. Here are some comments from Gawker.

sylphidesNeetzan Zimmerman says: “Eh, terriers aren't swimmers. Too dense- they sink like anchors. If my partner who I knew could swim and my terrier were on a sinking yacht, I'd assume the partner was okay and go for the dog, too.”

TexasTexasTexassweet.pea.leigh says: “If this were hubs and I, we'd both want to get the dogs to shore first. Not because we don't love each other, but because our pets are small fur people. If one of us was at threat of dying or really hurt (versus "Babe, I'll take the pups and be right back.")...different story. “

Another commenter was more diplomatic:

Son of Spamsylphides says "Same here. I'd save our 8 year old westie first. I know my wife's a good swimmer and wouldn't mind me saving her "baby" before checking on her. Still, I'm going upstairs to ask her this scenario and check if I assumed right."

So what would you do? The wife or the dog first in an emergency situation? Do you agree with Anley.

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