Hiker rescued from Mount Olympus along with his yellow lab, Leo

Photo Courtesy: Salt Lake County SAR

SALT LAKE COUNTY, Utah, July 29, 2020 (Gephardt Daily) — Salt Lake County Search and Rescue teams were called out Monday afternoon to rescue a hiker along with his dehydrated 120 pound yellow lab, Leo, on Mount Olympus.

Crews responded just before 4 p.m. and the rescue took a total of six hours and 20 minutes, said a news release from SLCOSAR.

“The two set out to hike Mount Olympus around 11 a.m.” the news release said “The two got to the saddle just below the summit when Leo the dog showed signs of overheating and couldn’t go on. He laid down and would no longer move on his own. The hiker used all the water that he had left to try and hydrate and cool the dog off. When the dog’s condition was not improving he called for help.”

Search and Rescue sent two teams up the mountain with large amounts of water and rescue equipment to carry the dog down the trail. With the afternoon temperatures nearing 100 degrees on the west-facing mountain, having little to no shade and heavy packs, it took the SAR members some extra time to get up to the saddle.

“Once to the patients, the team gave them water and tried to rehydrate them and cool Leo off with water and fanning,” the news release said. “Leo was able to eventually drink four or five liters of water. Thankfully an afternoon thunderstorm blew in and cooled the temperature off a bit. We tried to see if Leo could walk with some assistance, but he was to weak, so he was loaded into a litter and was taken down the mountain as quickly as possible.”

The team was off the mountain around 10:20 p.m. Unified Police Department had made arrangements with a local vet to get Leo to them as soon as he was off the mountain. A Unified Police officer used his patrol car as an emergency vehicle to rush Leo straight to the vet. All team members and the hiker got off the mountain in good condition.

“Remember your four legged friend doesn’t regulate heat as well as you do,” the news release said. “If you’re going to hike with your doggy leave early, or wait a few more months until it cools off.”

Crews posted an update on Leo on Facebook Tuesday: “PUPdate on Leo the yellow lab from last night’s rescue: It looks like Leo is overcoming his heat exhaustion and his kidney function is returning back to normal, so he should be OK. The vet is trying to get him to walk around some more so he can go home soon.”


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