Skip to content

Border terrier survives underground for almost 2 weeks

  • by
Freda and Victoria Hogan

NEWS AND COMMENT-LICKEY HILLS COUNTRY PARK, NEAR BIRMINGHAM, UK: They say that a dog can survive three days without water and can survive for 5 to 7 days or more without food. I don’t know if this dog was without water or food for the entire time she was trapped, but a border terrier was trapped underground in a badger’s set for 12 days and survived.

Freda and Victoria Hogan

Freda and Victoria Hogan. Photo: Black’s Vets/SWNS

The question I have is whether she had access to food and water. It seems very difficult to imagine that she did indeed have access to either. Perhaps there was some food inside the badger’s set and some water leaked into the set. The dog’s name is Freda. She darted down a badger’s set while she was being walked near Birmingham.

Her owner, Victoria Hogan, 46, set up camp near the badger’s sett and waited. She hoped that he would emerge. She tried cooking bacon near the hole and blew the aroma into the hole with a leaf blower. Anything to get Freda back onto the surface. That failed.

Hogan called the fire and rescue service to help. They used a specialist listening device and underground cameras without success.

Hogan gave up with great sadness after eight days because she had lost hope. She went home to grieve.

After 12 days, in all, underground Freda was found collapsed by a nearby road by three students.

Hogan was flabbergasted that she was still alive. She said: “When I was told she was alive it felt like a miracle and I ran out of the house to find her. She was very weak and bedraggled but she was alive.”

Hogan and her husband, who happens to be a vet, took Freda to Black’s Vets in Dudley, West Midlands. It’s a veterinary surgery where they both work, apparently.

Freda was treated for malnutrition, pressure sores, cats and dehydration. She was back home two days after her emergence from her earthly tomb.

The clinical director at Black’s Vets said: “I’ve been a vet for almost 30 years but Freda’s story is one of the most incredible I’ve ever known.”

Like I said, Freda must have found some sustenance underground over those 12 days unless she has extended the time that a dog can survive without sustenance of any kind.

What is it like in a badger’s sett. This video provides some insights. I think this video helps understand how Freda survived. Although she did not move much as she developed pressure sores. This indicates that she was trapped and static for long periods of time.

Below are some more dog rescue stories.