A mile out in the Atlantic off the Florida coast, Zuko’s boat cut through the waves. Each passing swell threw water up over the stern deck, teasing Zuko. Playing along, the terrier jumped up into the air trying to catch each spray, and landed all four paws squarely on the deck again. No one was telling him no or making him stop, and being a young dog – or at least an older puppy – he was full of energy that needed to be burned on pure fun.
After a long while of watching this entertainment, Zuko’s human family turned their attention to other things. When they returned aft, Zuko wasn’t there. Maybe he’d tired and found a place in the cabin for a nap? They looked in the cabin. No Zuko. Searching everywhere on the boat that they could think of and coming up empty, there was only one horrifying possibility left: Zuko had gone overboard. Fear set in immediately.
Turning the boat around, they attempted to travel the same course in hopes of finding him. Maybe they were in the wrong place or weren’t retracing their steps correctly, or perhaps ocean currents swept Zuko away from the area. Coming up empty on the first pass, they repeated the search pattern until they despaired of ever finding such a little dog in a big ocean. They returned to port, with much tear shedding.
Meanwhile, on another boat, a group out of Fort Lauderdale were boating in the same waters when, by chance, Dylan Berian spotted Zuko among the waves. Without hesitating, Berian jumped in and swam to the dog who by now was cold and getting tired. The pooch wouldn’t have lasted much longer without Berian’s sharp eye and resolute action. Onboard his new boat, Zuko shivered for several minutes but quickly warmed up with help from his new friends. Fortuitously, Zuko’s collar was still on his neck, along with his name and his owner’s phone number. A twenty-minute boat ride later, Zuko was reunited with his grateful owners who now shed tears of joy and relief. The rescue and aftermath were documented on video by Bryn Crowell who shared them on TikTok.
Zuko is one lucky puppy.
As near as I can tell this took place last month, sometime in early to mid-October. Yes, it’s November already. Just two more months and it’ll be 2022!
“Dog Rescued a Mile Off Florida Coast Reunited With Family” (1:26)