Dog Spends Four Days Protecting 76-Year-Old Owner Who Was Trapped Under Car

A 76-year-old man from New South Wales, Australia, is receiving much-needed medical attention after first surviving a serious car wreck on a remote farm property, and then enduring four days of being pinned beneath his crumpled vehicle. If it weren’t for Herbert Schutz’s faithful and devoted dog Boydy, an Australian Kelpie with a heart of gold, Schutz may not have made it out of the wreck alive.

Schutz’s car after the crash. (Photo credit: Noel Dawson/The Daily Telegraph)

Schutz’s car after the crash. (Photo credit: The Border Mail)

On Friday, April 12, 2013 Schutz was behind the wheel of a four-wheel drive vehicle when it crashed into a tree. The car flipped, pinning Schutz under the chassis. He struggled but ultimately failed to free himself.

For four long days and three even longer nights, Schutz lay trapped in the wreck, but luckily he wasn’t completely alone. Schutz’s canine companion Boydy stuck by his master’s side.

The elderly but strong Schutz managed to keep himself conscious for most of the time he was trapped beneath his vehicle. Though he was seriously injured in the accident — suffering from a skull fracture, a dislocated shoulder, and two broken hips — and had no access to food or water during his four-day ordeal, Schutz was able to focus his attention on his survival, and on his brave and loyal dog.

As the days passed, Schutz’s daughter Helka became worried after not being able to reach her father. Julian Barrett and Eric Merritt, two concerned neighbors, set out in search of Schutz but to no avail. A short time later, they spotted a wrecked vehicle.

“We saw the car and that no one was in it,” Merritt tells The Border Mail.


As the two men turned their backs, preparing to continue their search elsewhere, they saw something that made them reinvestigate the scene of the accident — Boydy. The little dog ran out from beneath the wreckage and made his presence known, alerting Barrett and Merritt to his owner’s location.

“Then his dog ran around the front of the car,” Merritt remembers, “and then we heard [Mr. Schutz] call for the dog.”

“That’s when we found him,” he adds.

Barrett and Merritt told emergency response workers that Schutz remained calm and coherent while they tried to free him. The men noticed right away that Schutz was covered in Boydy’s hair, an indication that the little dog snuggled up next to his owner to try and keep him warm as the temperatures dipped just under 40 degrees.

Schutz was transported to John Hunter Hospital in Newcastle, where he is still being treated for his injuries today. His daughter Helka reports that her father is awake, alert, and happy to be alive.

As for Boydy, the steadfast dog is currently staying with neighbors. Merritt says Boydy should be commended for protecting his owner.

“Even when we found him, the dog ran straight to his side and cuddled up to him,” Merritt says, “he didn’t want to leave him even then.”

DogTime 2013