IDAHO FALLS, ID (CBS Local) - An Idaho mother says "divine help" is to thank after she saved a 55-pound dog that fell off a cliff.
Tia Vargas set out on a July 5 hike on Boise's Table Rock in honor of her son, who is reportedly battling substance and mental health issues. The mother says counselors encouraged her to take on challenging activities to help relate to her son's struggles better.
"One of the things it said was to figure out how many miles you can walk and double it," Vargas told EastIdahoNews.com. "So I decided I was going to hike Table Rock."
Before Vargas and her father could finish the seven-mile hike, they ran into another party of hikers who found an injured English Springer Spaniel. The dog, named Boomer, had been reported missing according to a sign at the bottom of the mountain.
"I picked up the dog, put him on my shoulders and carried him down to where my dad was," Vargas told reporters. "He laughed and said, 'You don't think this hike is hard enough so you have to pick him up and carry him down?'"
Vargas and her father took several pictures of the mother's grueling journey to get Boomer some help. According to Boomer's owners, the dog slipped off a snow crevice and fell 100 feet before rolling down a 200-foot hill.
"They went to find him but he was gone. They assumed he had climbed under a bush and died because there's no way he could have survived that. He's a miracle dog," Vargas explained. Amazingly, Boomer had only suffered a few torn ligaments in the fall.
As for their journey down the seven-mile trail, Vargas believes a higher power was looking out for her and the Springer Spaniel. "I was fatigued, my legs were shaky and felt like Jello, and there's no way I could have gotten him off that mountain without divine help."
Boomer's owners have reportedly agreed to let Vargas keep the dog since his injuries will likely keep him from being a hunting dog again. "He's supposed to be in our family. He's not a quitter and I'm so glad I was there that day." Vargas added. "We're all here to help each other and I'm just glad I can help."
for more features.