Owner Victoria Hogan feared her dog had been killed after disappearing into a badger’s sett for 264 hours – but not wanting to give up on hope, she camped outdoors praying for her to make a return
A terrified dog spent 11 days stuck underground after disappearing down a badger’s sett.
Owner Victoria Hogan was out walking her two border terriers when Freda darted down the hole.
Her other dog, Bert, tried to follow her but was attacked by a badger.
Victoria feared Freda had been killed, but camped out in the woods in the vague hope she would finally emerge.
She was told to do anything for 48 hours by the Park Ranger and RSPCA as its illegal to disturb a badger den.
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The 46-year-old then cooked bacon and blew the aroma down into the hole with a leaf blower to try and coax her out.
She also played recordings of Bert and other terriers howling thinking she might appear.
Freda poked her head out a couple of times but then vanished again.
However, she finally darted out of the sett in Lickey Hills Country Park, near Birmingham – after 264 hours – on Monday.
Victoria Hogan, who lives with her vet husband Brian, 52, in Lickey, said: “I knew she was in there somewhere.
“But these sets can be extensive with several ways in and out, but I stayed there hoping she’d turn up.
“I was devastated and was believing she had been killed. I did n’t say but I’d hoped she’d died quickly and not suffered in a tunnel deep below the ground.
“But I cooked bacon and blew the aroma down there with a leaf blower and even played recordings of Bert and other terriers howling thinking she might appear.”
Freda was treated by vets for bite marks, deep pressure sores and dehydration.
Victoria added: ”I’ll be keeping a close eye on Freda and Bert in the future. I just couldn’t go through that again.”
It comes just days after a border terrier spent six days inside a badger sett in Rowde, Wilts, after falling into it during a walk.
Owner Annie Davidson put out a missing dog appeal fearing her dog – named Bumble – might have climbed out when she was not there.
But then suddenly Bumble popped her head up like a whack-a-mole and she clambered to safety.
Annie said: “We’re so delighted to have Bumble back home. The experience was traumatic for her. Bumble popped up and out of the badger sett. Very thin and dehydrated but fine otherwise.”
Elsewhere, a dog had to be rescued after getting stuck down a 22ft deep crevice on a mountain.
Reggie, an 11-month-old spaniel, has been branded a “little warrior” after he survived the fall at Llwynypia Mountain in the Clydach forest in Wales.
After being stuck for 34 hours, he was rescued and safely returned to his owners, who have said he is in “good spirits” despite his ordeal.
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