Two Surfers Save a ‘Starving, Cold’ Dog From Sea Cave After It Had Been Missing For 3 Months

Two friends were out on a surfing trip when they saved a dog stuck in a sea cliff cave.

On August 1, Zach Regan and Matty Johnson were off on an overnight adventure on Vancouver Island’s remote west coast. With everything they needed to go surfing and fishing, it was set to be a great trip.

They were out in their small aluminum boat when, out of the corner of his eye, Matty saw the brown legs of an animal in a cave. It was too small to be a bear or a wolf.

It was a starving, cold, terrified dog.

“We were trying to beat an upcoming storm, but we made the decision to save the dog,” Matty Johnson tells GNN.

The pair’s rescue mission was on. It involved a “wetsuit, a surfboard, a lasso, almost being bitten in the face, a reef, big waves, and awesome teamwork.”

Once Stella was safely in their boat, they snuggled her in a bag to keep her warm. Then, once on dry land in Canada again, they began their search for the owner.

All photos submitted by Matty Johnson

Matty says there were great vibes all around ”when the owners—long since consigned to the death of their dog—got word she was safe.”

The owners were amazed to see their pet again. They thought they’d lost their dog forever when they became separated on the wild Juan de Fuca Trail three months ago.


Johnson wanted to share his story with GNN for one reason: “Wanting to spread good news and inspire people to put themselves out there when the opportunity arises.”

That’s just the kind of good news we love to hear.

Stella, safe on land, Matt Johnson


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