KAUAI (KHON2) — It’s a rescue story worth sharing.
Botanist Adam Williams, who’s used to climbing trees and down cliffs in search of rare plants, was enlisted to rappel down into an 81-foot deep hole in the Koloa section of the Lihue-Koloa Forest Reserve for a rescue.
But it wasn’t a hiker in distress, it was a one-year-old hunting dog named Orange who fell into the pit last Saturday, November 2.
His owner, Tarvan Orsatelli, had a GPS tracker on him and was able to locate him quickly.
Over the past five days Orsatelli, friends and family members lowered food and water into the hole, trying to figure out how to get him out.
Orange would whimper, even howl, but that was how they knew he was still alive.
But the hole didn’t make it easy to get Orange out of.
The Kauai Fire Department was initially called to help, but their ladders are only 25-feet long.
Since the incident happened on DOFAW land, Williams, a certified arborist with the DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW), and DOFAW Kauai Branch Manager Sheri Mann entered the picture.
It’s believed that the vertical, tubular-shaped cavern is part of an old water irrigation system.
It was later decided that Williams would lower himself into the hole to rescue the dog.
With a half dozen people watching from above, Williams rigged his climbing gear, tied off to a stout Guava tree and began lowering himself down. For safety, he carried a radio and air monitoring device to the bottom with him.
Within a few minutes, Adam stepped onto the bottom and found Orange, who was very excited to see him.
Williams said, “He was really happy to see me after he got over the shock of being down in a hole for a week.”
Williams bundled Orange into a small canvas bag and a couple of men up top began slowly pulling him to safety.
Orange’s owner, Orsatelli, says Orange has a few scrapes, lost some weight during his ordeal, but was not much worse for the wear after tumbling into the 81-foot shaft.
Animal control officer Kewehi Harris of the Kauai Humane Society was on hand to take Orange in to be checked by a veterinarian and was impressed with the dog’s relatively good condition.
Orsatelli says Orange is shaping up to be one of his best-hunting dogs and now he has a special place in his heart for him – along with Adam and the others who helped in this successful and heartwarming rescue of a little dog, named Orange.