SALEM A large golden retriever with arthritis had to be rescued after he got stuck at the bottom of a steep hill during a hike with his owner in Marion County Wednesday.
The rescue effort took more than five hours and some creative work from volunteers.
Georgia Baker, 59, of Woodburn said she was taking her 12-year-old dog, Dan, on a two-mile round trip hike to Abiqua Falls when it just became too much for him.
Baker's aging dog weighs 156 pounds and suffers from arthritis, said Don Thomson with the Marion County Sheriff s Office. The steep incline, coupled with the high temperatures, were more than the dog could handle.
The trail is rated moderately difficult, with several areas where the incline is very steep. Other hikers spotted Baker struggling with her pooch and called 911.
A team of 18 rescuers, all volunteers, responded to help.
Once on scene, the rescuers devised a sled and used plastic webbing to secure Dan for the ride up the hill. Working together, they used ropes and sheer strength to pull and carry the dog up several hundred feet to safety, Thomson said.
Dan and Baker were reunited around 8 p.m. and headed home for some much-needed rest.