Dog finds help after 88-year-old owner falls in California

Human Interest

GLENDALE, Calif. (KTLA) — A city employee in California was on his routine trash collection route when he noticed Sandy the dog was not sitting at his usual window spot.

Kirk White, of Glendale Integrated Waste Management, said the dog was sitting outside instead.

“I knew something was wrong,” White said of the July 10 incident.

Around the side of the house, Sandy’s owner, 88-year-old Gwendola Johnson, was on the ground. She had tripped and fallen on the porch an hour earlier and was unable to call for help.

She was able to see White pulling in her trash cans as he normally does, but he wasn’t able to see or hear her.

“When I saw him, I said to Sandy, ‘You go get him,’ so he did,” she said.

Security camera footage from the home shows Sandy approaching White and barking.

“It wasn’t aggressive in any way,” White said. “It was kind of very much just like, ‘Hey, I’ve something to show you. Come follow me.'”

Sandy led White right to his fallen owner.

“She was on the floor, unable to get up,” White said. “I know it was very hot that Friday … seeing someone in the sun, that wasn’t right at all.”

He helped Johnson up and made sure she wasn’t injured.

“We all cried when we saw the video,” said Johnson’s granddaughter Cheryl Malvar. “Sandy did a good job.”

Malvar said Sandy wasn’t the only hero.

“Kirk actually made an effort. Not everybody does. He investigated and he was aware enough to know it was off,” she said. “We love him. He’ll always have friends here.”

White says he thinks anyone in that position would do the same.

“Just helping another human, that’s what we’re supposed to do,” he said. “After this, I was thinking I want a dog like Sandy. We can learn something from animals.”

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