38 Hunting Dogs Rescued from Mississippi Lake

38 Hunting Dogs Rescued from Mississippi Lake

Talk about being a good neighbor.

Earlier this month, two State Farm insurance agents and a fishing guide in Mississippi rescued 38 hunting dogs that had become stranded treading water in Grenada Lake.

Arkansas resident Bob Gist and fellow insurance salesman Brad Carlisle had traveled down to the lake for a day of crappie fishing with guide Jordan Chrestman of Tri-Lake Guide Service.

They weren’t on the lake for long when the trio noticed something strange in the water: dozens of hound dogs fitted with radio collars.

"Jordan had the presence of mind and nerve to turn to his paying customers and say, 'If you guys don’t mind, we need to go check on those dogs as they are out really far.' Without him, there would have been 38 dogs drown that day as we would not have known to go save them," Gist told MeatEater in an email. "We were certainly there and pulled dog after dog out of the water but he is the proverbial 'The Man.'"

They began pulling the dogs from the water and into the boat, one at a time. They loaded up as many as they could and took them back to shore. It took them three trips to rescue all the dogs. One of the pups was initially hesitant to accept their offer of rescue but soon realized the error of his ways.

“When we first started there was this white one that Brad tried to reach for and the dog bit at him. He moved closer to me, so I tried to reach for him, and he tried to bite me, so we left him.” Gist told Jonesboro Right Now. “When we came back for the second load it was probably 30-45 minutes later. By that time, he was ready to get in the boat. He wasn’t biting anybody.”

hound rescue

How the dogs ended up a mile offshore was a mystery soon solved. Grenada is home to a strong community of fox hunters. Gist says the dogs had been a part of a fox hunt, but they began trailing a deer that ran into the lake. When the dogs tried to follow, they became disoriented.

“They were lost. The dogs were at least a mile offshore. The way their heads were in the water there’s no way they could see the shore. They were dog paddling and completely lost,” Gist said.

The trio returned the dogs to their owners once they got to shore, and when the owners tried to pay them, Grist says they refused. Chrestman just asked that “when you see us in trouble, ya’ll come help us.”

Gist and Carlisle have a killer story for their next State Farm commercial (if dogs could purchase insurance, they’d really be in the money), but the Arkansas native was quick to credit his fishing guide for the rescue.

“The hero here is Jordan Chrestman of Tri-Lake Guide Service,” he posted on Facebook. “We all pulled dogs from the water and Jordan managed the recovery like he had done it before. He is the hero here for sure.”

The group kept fishing for a few more hours but, according to Gist, “caught more dogs than fish.”

Editor's Note: This article has been updated with further information and quotes from Bob Gist.

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