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Houston athletes help neighbors rescue puppies from storm drain

Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Houston athletes help neighbors rescue puppies from storm drain

Major-league pitcher Daniel Mengden and Ironman competitor Rick D’Amico helped rescue two puppies that had been trapped in a Houston storm drain for several days, KHOU reported.

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The two athletes were helping a group called Reggie's Friends to retrieve the pups, KPRC reported. LaChrystal Ricke, who runs Reggie’s Friends, said she had been unsuccessfully trying to round up a pregnant dog before she gave birth to a litter of eight. Over three weeks, Ricke said rescuers were able to rescue the mother and six of her puppies, but two had strayed, the television station reported.

Residents could hear the two puppies barking in a storm drain, and on Monday the Houston Fire Department opened a manhole cover to allow rescuers to find the dogs, KTRK reported.

"We could hear them crying so we knew they were still alive," D'Amico told KHOU.

"You know they're hungry. You know they're potentially hurt because they fell a great distance," Ricke told the television station. "No food, no clean water, and it's really hard."

D'Amico and Mengden put a ladder into the sewer water to lure the pups to safety. .

"I was whistling to them and they kept yelling and barking. Finally, it just got louder and louder and louder," Mengden, a pitcher for the Oakland Athletics and a Houston native, told KHOU. "One of them kind of put up a fight. It was biting at us and stuff. It was just scared.”

The dogs were taken to a veterinarian to ensure they were healthy.

Mengden said he and his girlfriend were going to adopt the two puppies, KHOU reported.

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