Off-Roading Heroes Rescue Pit Bull Trapped in Mine Shaft

NOV. 26, 2015 UPDATE: Happy news — After receiving an award on “The All-Star Dog Rescue Celebration” tonight for his heroic act, Michael Schoepf announced he is now Corona’s official dog dad.

pit bull rescued from mine shaft

After Michael Schoepf and some friends left a bonfire to go off-roading Friday night in Corona, Calif., they came across a mine shaft “in the middle of nowhere,” Schoepf told CBS Los Angeles.

While a bonfire in severely dry Southern California seems like a pretty bad idea, it was definitely a great idea for the off-roaders to stop when they came across the abandoned, 75-foot-deep shaft. Using a flashlight, they peered down into it. Imagine their surprise — looking back up at them was a 1-year-old Pit Bull.

“We felt instantly we can’t leave here, we have to get this dog out of here,” Schoepf told ABC7.

Schoepf and Galdden returned to the bonfire to gather up friends and rescue tools.

They all returned to the mine shaft to save the life of the dog they named Corona. With a harness, ropes and the help of his friends, Schoepf was lowered into the shaft.

“I put Corona here on my shoulders,” he told ABC7. “When I got there, she held on for dear life and we climbed back up.”

He said Corona is “wonderful, she’s an amazing, amazing dog. So obedient.”

It’s a mystery as to how she ended up in the mine shaft and how long she was in it. “There’s no way she could have made it all the way down there on her own,” Nickolas Galdden, one of the rescuers, told ABC7. “At some point she had to have fallen.”

Schoepf took Corona home and slept beside her. The next morning, he took her to Happy Tails Animal Hospital in Garden Grove to have her checked out by a veterinarian.

It could have been much worse, but Corona only suffered an eye injury, possibly when she fell down the shaft, as well as some scratches, but no broken bones, Dr. Keri Berka told ABC7. She performed the examination free of charge because Schoepf and his friends had done “the right thing” by saving Corona’s life.

Corona had a microchip, but the information was not current. (A good reminder to make sure your own dog’s microchip information is up to date.)

If her pet parents can’t be found, Schoepf will consider adopting her.

“She gets a second chance,” he told CBS Los Angeles. “She’s very well deserving of it.”

Photo via Twitter

Laura Goldman

I am a freelance writer and lifelong dog lover. For five years, I was a staff writer for i Love Dogs. When that site shut down, I started this blog...because I STILL Love Dogs!