Words by Dillon Law | As Told By Gunner
“First and foremost, I want to thank all of the staff at Gunner Kennels for saving my dog’s life yesterday with a quality product that stood up to the test that we all hope never comes. I can’t thank you enough.”
My four-year-old German Wirehaired Pointer and I were on our way to a pheasant hunt on a Saturday – headed out to chase the few birds left in Illinois with a couple buddies for an annual January hunt – when I lost control of the vehicle due to bad road conditions and flipped my truck. Lincoln was in the bed of the truck in the Gunner Intermediate crate.
It was snowing pretty good that morning, and I was traveling well under the speed limit. Up ahead I could see that I was probably headed toward a sketchy patch, so I started to slow down. Just as I did that my tires caught in some slush. It was enough so that my front right tire slid into the ditch. At that moment, I tried to adjust but the vehicle slid straight into the oncoming traffic lane, hitting the opposite road’s ditch and rolling over.
It all seemed to happen in about a second but best as I can tell, the ditch caught the front of the truck and lifted us up, flipping at least once before landing on the highway.
When the truck settled, I didn’t know which way was up – the cab was so smashed I couldn’t get through a window or open a door. I quickly realized I was stuck in that vehicle. My thoughts in rapid succession were: “Am I in water? Is my truck on fire? Where is my dog?”
It took three first responders to rip the door off enough for me to eventually slide out, but until they got to the scene – I’d guess it was about 15 minutes after it happened – I wasn’t able to get to Lincoln.
A few bystanders ran up seconds after it all went down. I remember them asking if I’m ok, but all I could respond back was with another question – “Is my dog ok?”
“I asked those bystanders to release him from the crate, and they came back to tell me that he was fine. I’m telling you that Lincoln made it through this accident without so much as a scratch, physically or emotionally.”
What makes it even more incredible is that the bed rail of the truck actually landed directly on the kennel; so that the Gunner (and my dog) ended up wedged between the ditch and the truck. But you can barely tell the crate was even touched, even though it was wedged between the truck and the ground, hard enough that I’m told it took several grown men to remove it from the accident.
And here’s the other thing – I had a pretty new python cable lock attached to the kennel, the braided kind that you aren’t supposed to be able to cut through. Well, at some point during the accident, the python lock snapped in half. I had to buy another python lock, but not another kennel.
I had a pair of tie-down straps too (not the Gunner brand) and those ripped off in the action as well. Meanwhile, the crate’s still usable and in decent shape. The G1™ did its job and then some.
I’ll tell you why this kennel is worth its weight in gold: I’ve had Lincoln since he was 8 weeks old. I trained him myself, and he’s seen well over 1,000 retrieves. Ducks, pheasants – he even blood trails deer. He and I have done a lot of life together, we’ve spent a lot of hours with one another, and he’s my sidekick.
A couple hours after the accident, I loaded Lincoln back up in the kennel and took him for a walk by the field. You would have never been able to tell he was just in a rollover accident. And to this day he still loves his kennel.
“This dog really is like a family member to us, and you saved his life. My wife and I both thank all of you from the bottom of our hearts.”
Read more Gunner Save Stories: “Gunner Saved Diesel’s Life“
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