FIREFIGHTERS from Beaconsfield and Gerrards Cross rushed to the rescue of a dog that found itself in peril after falling into a fast-flowing river over the weekend.

The plight of the dog, which fell into the River Colne in New Denham yesterday, has prompted a safety warning to pet owners after the recent heavy rainfall.

Watch Manager Andy Maloney, from Gerrards Cross Fire Station, said: "The dog had fallen into some low-level, fast-flowing water, but had managed to find a small refuge under a bridge.

"Once a safe system of work had been put in place using the Gerrards Cross and London crews, two firefighters were committed from each end of the bridge in full drysuits.

"Against all odds, and after a number of attempts, the dog was passed up to safety. He is a very lucky dog, and his owner was very thankful."

Firefighters, who also came from Hillingdon, were called out at around 3.43pm. They were at the scene for about 30 minutes.

With waterways in Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes swollen by the recent heavy rain, firefighters are reminding pet-owners to follow this advice:

• Keep dogs on leads near water.

• Should your dog get into difficulty in a lake, river or other waterway, please don't put your safety or other people’s at risk by going in after it.

• Stay calm and dial 999 for help. Firefighters are trained and equipped to deal with these incidents.