NEWS

Sako the King Shepherd inducted to Animal Hall of Fame after saving owner's life

05/05/2015 11:08 EDT | Updated 05/05/2016 05:59 EDT
Sako, a King Shepherd who lives in Kanaka Bar, near Lytton, B.C., has been recognized for bravery after saving his teenage owner's life following a car crash.

Sako is among four dogs to be inducted to the Purina Animal Hall of Fame this year.

Last summer, the dog was travelling with owner Joseph Phillips-Garcia, then 16, as well as Phillips-Garcia's aunt, cousin and a friend on a family road trip to pick potatoes.

On the way home, in a remote area, their vehicle went off the road and rolled down a steep cliff.

Phillips-Garcia and Sako were the only survivors, but were stuck at the bottom of the ravine for two days before they were found by a cousin and brought back to safety.

"Joe was very physically damaged," Phillips-Garcia's mother Fawn Adolph told Daybreak's South Shelley Joyce.

"He broke his left femur bone, his right collar bone and had surgery done on his clavicle." 

Sako stayed by his owner's side throughout the ordeal. Adolph said her son remembers the dog fighting off predators like cougars, bears and coyotes​ to protect him.

Adolph said they're thrilled Sako's bravery is getting him national attention, though he's already been recognized at home.

"You can see the connection between Joe and Sako is even stronger now."

To hear the full interview with Fawn Adolph, listen to the audio labelled: Lytton dog awarded for saving a life.

MORE:cbcNews