A young French family have good reason to be eternally grateful to their pet dog Max, after the animal saved their three year old boy from drowning in a river.
At around pm on Thursday, Matthiew (as the young boy is called) was with his parents and best friend Max at an outdoor recreational area on the banks of the Ognon River, in the commune of Mélisey, Haute-Saône.
Whilst the adults started preparing a barbecue and tending to their baby daughter, Matthiew and Max played together on the river beach.
Then, for a split second when his parents weren’t looking, Matthiew ran to the shore, slipped on a rock and inadvertently fell into the cold water.
Three-year-old Max, a cross between a border collie and a Bernese Mountain dog, didn’t hesitate for one second to jump into the river.
The boy was already being swept downstream but Max paddled towards him at speed, allowing the boy to grab onto his collar and stop him from drowning.
“He already had his head under water,” Matthiew’s mother Melanie said of the moment she and her husband noticed what was happening.
“I told him to go to the side of the beach where it was less dangerous but he didn’t listen.”
Fortunately, his parents were able to get to the boy and their dog in time.
“I grabbed him by one arm, got him out of the water and immediately wrapped him up in a blanket, ” the father told local daily l’Est Republicain.
Upon hearing the good news, Haute-Saone Police shared a picture of the plucky pooch congratulating him on his bravery.
“They’ve grown up together and always been close, but now they’re even closer,” Matthew’s mum summed up.
Man’s best friend? For this little boy, it’s certainly the case.