A Siberian boy was walking home from school when he saw that his favorite neighborhood dog was stuck in a roadside service shaft. After returning home to change, he went back to save the dog, but accidentally fell in.
Raul Kutliakhmetov, 7, was stuck in the shaft for three days and nights in temperatures as low as -10 C.
The shaft was three meters deep and made of cement, making it difficult for rescuers to hear the boy’s screams.
He was only able to survive and avoid hypothermia by hugging the dog.
A doctor who treated him was shocked he was alive.
“We are in awe at how he managed to survive, sitting inside there for three days. He told us that all that time his dog and him were clutching to each other trying to warm each other up,” he said.
When word got out that Raul was missing, more than 200 people joined the search to find him. Rescuers were finally able to locate the boy and the dog after they heard the dog barking nearly 72 hour after the boy fell in.
Raul and the dog were both pulled out.
Raul said, shortly after he was rescued, “I was coming back home from school and heard a strange noise. It was coming from inside the uncovered hole on the side of the road. I looked inside and saw my favorite dog down there.”
Raul said he often played with the dog in Bulgakovo, his home village.
So he went home to change clothes but returned only to fall in the hole.
“I wanted to save the dog and fell inside; I was calling but no one heard me. I’m shivering a lot and my legs and arms aching,” he said.
Road engineer Maksim Belskiy heard the boy was missing when it was announced on the radio. He quickly thought to check the service shafts around the area.
The dog was alive when he was rescued but is now missing again.