Puppy drives owner’s car into pond

Rosie (inset) accidentally hit the Dodge Neon’s gear shift into drive, and then fell on the accelerator pedal, sending the vehicle into the pond. (Photo credit: Canton Police)

German Shepherds are known for being talented dogs — some are hero police K-9s, others are beloved service animals. The most famous German Shepherd was a war dog turned Hollywood celebrity.

But one German Shepherd puppy from Canton, Mass., might have a future as a racecar driver — with a bit more practice, anyway.

Rosie, a 12-week-old German Shepherd, has always been a spirited, if not mischievous, pooch.

“She’s very hyper, energetic, and a troublemaker,” owner John Costello tells CBS Boston of his frisky dog.

But during a visit to a town park Sunday afternoon, Rosie’s antics reached a whole new level, and when all was said and done, a car ended up stuck in Bolivar Pond.

“The car went for a swim,” Costello tells My FOX Boston.

Costello was moving his daughter’s Dodge Neon when playful Rosie jumped, tangled up in her retractable leash, and fell — right on top of the gas pedal.

“The dog jumped in and hit the gear shift and the car jerked and she fell on top of the gas pedal,” Costello explains. “It was just scary.”

The Neon plunged into the Bolivar Pond. Costello was able to jump from the vehicle as it drifted farther out into the water, but poor Rosie was stuck inside.

Eric Hermann and another witness who was working nearby both ran to help Costello.

“It was about 30 feet out, the car,” Hermann explains. “Puppy was scared and ran in the back seat. The front door was open, [we were] trying to get him out the front door, coax him.”

Struggling to save Rosie, Costello called 9-1-1. Emergency personnel admit that they were surprised to hear what had happened.

“I’ve never heard of a puppy driving a car into a pond,” says Canton Police Officer Rob Quirk.

Meanwhile, the sinking Neon drifted further out into the water. Costello swam out to the vehicle as an emergency crew arrived on the scene. Officer Quirk says he couldn’t believe what he saw.

“Rosie got her leash entangled in the [gear] shifter,” Officer Quirk tells KTLA. “While [the dog was] trying to break free [the owner] stated the puppy fell onto the driver’s side floor and hit the accelerator sending the vehicle into the pond.”

Costello reached Rosie and immediately got to work rescuing her.

“I started screaming out, ‘My dog, my dog,” says Costello. “I jumped in through the window and grabbed her by the neck and pulled her out and we both fell back into the water.”

Emergency workers, including a dive team, were able to remove the submerged car from the water. The car was completely destroyed, Costello says, but he is glad both he and Rosie are okay.

After the rescue, Officer Quirk posted a tongue-in-cheek tweet on the Canton Police Department Twitter:

“The perp says he was just going with the flow of traffic,” he tweeted alongside a photo of Rosie.

Sources: KTLA, My FOX Boston, CBS Boston