Miraculous escape for pet dog Frank who plunged over 100-foot cliff on Yorkshire Coast

A dog which fell around 100 feet down a cliff on to a beach near Scarborough while the tide was coming in miraculously survived his ordeal and was reunited with his grateful owners by the RSPCA.

By Steve Bambridge
Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 3:00 pm
Updated Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 3:02 pm
Frank in the garden before his operation.
Frank in the garden before his operation.

Frank, a terrier-type dog, was walking along the Cleveland Way, near Lucy’s Beach Shack, in Cayton Bay with his owner Stewart Wragg when it is believed that he may have got the scent of a rabbit and took off.

Mr Wragg, 63, who was on holiday, went to look for him and was shocked when he realised Frank had tumbled down towards a rocky outcrop on the beach.

He could see there was no access down to the beach at that point and frantically had to continue a long way further along the cliff edge, before he could attempt to get down to search for his pet.

The cliff face Frank fell down.

Fortunately, Chris Gorman was walking along the beach and came across Frank, who was whimpering.

He could see the pet appeared to have a broken leg and so called the RSPCA and then carried Frank along the rocks to the beach as the tide was coming in.

Mr Gorman, 33, from Scarbrough, said: “It was lucky I was down there really as I was on the rocks looking for fishing spots and it is not normally a place where people walk.

“Then I heard a whimpering noise and could see the poor dog and that it looked like he had a broken leg. I thought he had run off from his owner and slipped on rocks – I had no idea he had fallen so far at the time.

Frank after his successful surgery.

“I took him along the beach and a couple saw me and gave me a blanket to use as a stretcher to carry him up the hill.”

He waited by the main road and RSPCA Inspector Claire Little arrived at the scene.

She rushed the injured dog to a nearby vets where he was found to have a broken bone on the front of his leg and a dislocated knee on a back leg.

She contacted the local dog warden and Mr Wragg had also reported Frank as missing to them so she was able to provide details to reunite the pair.

Five days after the incident, Frank had an operation to repair his broken leg and has had his injured back leg pinned. He is expected to make a full recovery.

Mr Wragg’s former partner Alison is now looking after Frank at her home in Chesterfield. She said: “He had an operation by our vet and I am so pleased he is doing really well in himself.

“He is eating well and being his normal happy self, you really wouldn’t know he had been put through such an ordeal.

“He was walking on the clifftop with Stewart, who is walking the Cleveland Way, when we think he went off investigating. Like most dogs he does like burrows and fox holes so we wonder if he caught the scent of something then in his over excitement went off too far.

“I am so grateful to Chris who went to his rescue and carried him up the cliff as the tide was coming in.

“We are so grateful to all involved for helping Frank and getting him back to us safely. He is now enjoying lots of cuddles and fuss from me.”

RSPCA inspector Claire said: “It is such a high drop – he was a very lucky boy to survive the fall and then to be found, especially as the tide was coming in.

“I would just like to remind people walking on coastal paths it is often good to put their dogs on leads in these areas. Often dogs can get excited with all the sights and sounds and even older pets may wander further than they normally do.”

To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit its website or call the donation line on 0300 123 8181.