Missing dog rescued 500 feet underground in Missouri’s Berome cave

Abby, a 13-year-old dog who was missing for two months, has been rescued after cavers heroically pulled her out of a complex cave system.

Rick Haley and Gerry Keene – both of whom have specialized cave rescue training – led the operation inside of Missouri’s second largest cave, Berome Moore, Haley told USA TODAY Sunday. They used a duffle bag and blankets to protect the dog as they maneuvered their way out.

Abby was moved 500 feet through a “very tight, awkward, vertical climb, handing her hand to hand upward to the surface,” Haley wrote on Facebook. 

On Saturday, Haley said he returned to the cave and found Abby’s footprints near the entrance she likely came in from — a 12 feet pit. Abby was 200 feet inside the main passage. 

Recreational cavers Gerry Keene, left, and Rick Haley, right, carry Abby, a 13-year-old dog who reportedly went missing on June 9, after staging a rescue operation to help save the dog on Aug. 6, Haley said.
Recreational caver Rick Haley poses with Abby, a 13-year-old dog that he and fellow caver Gerry Keene rescued from a cave north of Perryville, Missouri.

"One week out..she’s making a comeback," Haley wrote on his Facebook page accompanying the photo.

Haley and a team of around 30 were mapping the cave as part of a project for the Cave Research Foundation when Haley was asked to help stage a rescue operation for the dog.

Haley said the owner claimed Abby had been missing since June 9, meaning she could’ve been in the cave for up to two months.

Haley, who’s been caving since about 1990, and Keene were there with a team of around 30 to map a cave north of Perrysville, Missouri, as part of a project for the Cave Research Foundation when the mission came up. 

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