EAST ST. LOUIS Ill. – On Wednesday morning, FOX 2 warned you about a dog on the highway at the I-64 and I-55/70 split in East St. Louis.
We reached out to Gateway Pet Guardians and, with the help of IDOT, they were thankfully able to rescue that dog.
Jill Henke, Gateways Pet Guardians Operations Director, joined us Friday morning to talk about the rescue efforts. Henke says the tip was directed to their manager Sara and provided just enough information to assist.
“She happened to see some IDOT folks pulled over on the median on the busy highway,” said Henke. “They pointed her in the direction of the dog. They indicated the dog had been there since Sunday, and had been going in and out of highways. We were luckily able to get here to safety very quickly.”
Rescue crews have now given the dog a nickname of “Big Bertha.” She weighed more than 100 pounds. And it was challenging for Bertha to find her bearings around the busy highway.
“She just couldn’t figure her way out of those highways,” said Henke. “Every way she headed, she was going to run into the highway.”
Gateways Pet Guardians deals with many rescue situations around the Metro East, but ones like Wednesday around a highway can prove challenging.
“There’s no room for error, and when you make an error it can be fatal,” said Henke. “We were just lucky that all the stars aligned for us. We had the right people there, with the right equipment and right information, and we were able to round it up.”
The organization is hosting a Puppy Palooza event this Saturday, in which around 20 dogs will be available for adoption. The event runs from 2-4 p.m. at 1725 North 15 Street in East St. Louis. There will also be games, cupcakes and other activities for guests.