A day after a Florida woman was hit and killed by an alleged drunk driver while walking her dog, Barney, the frightened canine was found paddling in the Gulf of Mexico by a kayaker, miles away from the scene of the accident, a local newspaper reported.
The Florida Herald-Tribune reports that Barney, a Hungarian Viszla, was also hit in the crash that killed his owner, Donna Chen, of Sarasota. He fled the scene, and kept going — even after he hit the waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
It was there a kayaker found Barney, about half a mile out to sea and suffering from scrapes, abrasions and trauma. “He’s in obvious distress,” the kayaker remarked upon finding the trembling dog.
Barney’s rescue was captured on videotape, as the kayaker had been filming his fishing expedition at the time. “Our guess is that he was so freaked out and traumatized that he just wanted to get as far away from there as possible. And when he ran out of land, he took to the water,” the kayaker wrote on YouTube. “I feel lucky that I was there fishing, because there was no place for him to go and I don't know if he could have made it much farther. He's banged up, but fine. Our hearts go out to the family who lost their mother.”
Watch the video of Barney’s rescue below:
Barney is now back home with Chen’s husband and three children.
Funeral arrangements for Chen, a registered nurse and homemaker, are pending.
The man who hit Chen, 22-year-old Blake Talman of Bradenton, Florida, is facing charges including DUI manslaughter.