Dog Falls Out Off of Boat on Lake Michigan, Swims Miles to Be Rescued


A young Belgian Malinois called Rylee is one lucky dog.  She had fallen overboard and into Lake Michigan while boating with her humans.  She was only really missing for about 24-hours, however, she must have had one heck of an adventure getting home.

This all happened Sunday morning when Rylee’s humans called Ed and Kristin Casas decided to pack up Rylee and do some boating.  The group was on their way towards the Manitou Islands, and that’s about when Rylee went overboard.  They were having some electrical issues on the boat, and they were six miles away from land in just about every direction.

Everyone had been in the boat’s cabin while Ed worked on the repairing the issue.  Kristin had to exit the cabin to go topside and do something, and that’s when Rylee also got up and went out with her.

“In retrospect, I remember her coming out here to see where I was going,” said Kristin.  “My poor assumption was that she would go back into the cabin with her dad.”

After about ten minutes, Ed noticed that Rylee wasn’t with him, and wasn’t with Kristin.  They assumed that Rylee went overboard.  Of course, they looked all over for her, but couldn’t find her anywhere.  They even alerted the local coastguard station for help.  They spent hours with volunteers searching, but somehow Rylee quite literally disappeared.

While the search was on, Lynn Fiedor, the wife of a local fisherman that was helping look for Rylee on the water, found out about what was going on.  Lynn and her husband run a local lost dog search team, where they use many platforms to get the word out about a missing dog, including social media.  She got to putting Rylee’s info on Facebook as quick as possible.

“We ended up having over 20,000 people look at our post online and when I saw that I was like…we’re going to find the dog,” Lynn said.

Later Sunday night, a boater that picked up a dog struggling in the water that they happened upon saw the missing dog post about Rylee on Facebook.  They contacted Ed and Kristin to let them know that they got their dog out of the water, and dropped her off near Empire Beach, which is the area they though the dog was from.  When Ed and Kristin got to Empire Beach, Rylee was already gone.

On Monday morning, someone at a local campground called in a report of seeing Rylee.  They said they saw Rylee at the Platte River Campground.  Ed and Kristin were really hoping that this time, Rylee would still be there when thy arried, and she was.  Ed and Kristin are very grateful to everything that helped make finding Rylee safe and sound happen that much faster.

“We have a happy ending,” said Lynn.  “And it’s the reason we do what we do.”

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