I had one of the scariest 10 minutes of my life last night. The short version: My Whippet (Escher) fell out of my 2nd story window last night...and survived virtually unscathed. The long version...
First, a little background on Whippets (and sighthounds in general):
- They suffer from pretty bad separation anxiety...he doesn't like being left alone, especially in new surroundings (he's still adjusting to my temporary home back at my Dad's place). When left alone they panic and try to get out of wherever they are.
- They are 90% legs which makes them a little clumsy (they trip on stairs, can't round corners too gracefully, etc...but they are extremely agile when they run), and also more prone to broken limbs (just ask Phil about his girl's broken leg).
The weather's been cooling off a bit here in Charlotte, so I've been leaving my window open at night in the apartment above my Dad's garage. Last night I decided to step out briefly to grab some takeout and didn't think twice about leaving the window open while I was gone. Below the window is about 3 feet of roof that slopes at about a 45 degree angle, then drops off about 10 feet to the concrete driveway.
When I got home, Escher was nowhere to be found, and it took me about 5 minutes to put 2 and 2 together to realize he had gotten out of the window. I of course immediately panicked as that's quite a long drop for anything, much less an animal mostly comprised of limbs. It was dark (and raining) at this point, so I raced over to the main house to grab a flashlight very much expecting to find my dog either dead, or in pretty bad shape.
My folks were out to dinner, but there was a couple over looking after the kids...I explained what was going on as quickly as possible, and Art (the husband) came out with me to help look for him. My first instinct was to search under bushes and whatnot thinking that A) Whippets abhor the rain and B) if he's hurt he'll probably be hiding. I barely even remember searching at this point as I was all adrenaline. I looked for about 10 minutes but he was nowhere to be found, however Art stumbled across him first: He was curled up on one of the couches on the front porch, scared out of his mind.
I got there and called out his name; he immediately popped up and ran over to me...no broken bones, no blood, nothing. I rushed him inside and started poking/prodding/squeezing to see if anything else was wrong, and there wasn't. Aside from a few small cuts on the pads of his feet and hocks (which were bleeding a little) he was fine. Amazing.
In hindsight he more than likely walked out to the edge of the roof and then hopped down (but that's still a huge jump); if he would have slipped no doubt he would have fallen on his side or back, and would've been in much worse shape. We got incredibly lucky this time. The window will remain closed from here on out...never underestimate what an animal with SA will do to get out of their compromising situation.