Loyal dog sits beside owner as he dies

A dog sat beside his owner as he tragically died after slipping and suffering a fatal blow to the head on a beach in Ireland.

Jake O’Neill, 22, was taking the family dog, Hippy, for a walk along Lady’s Cove beach in Co Waterford on Sunday when he fell and banged his head on the rocks. His injuries were so severe that he was unable to carry on to get help.

Jake fell unconscious and Hippy stayed with him until around 5pm when he saw some people walking down the beach. Hippy ran over and alerted them to the emergency by barking and beckoning them over.
An ambulance was called but tragically it was too late as the paramedics were unable to resuscitate him, and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

’He was an absolutely super young fella’

His family are clearly devastated but Jake’s father Mark spoke to the Irish Independent about his son:
“It was his ambition to be a fully qualified chef. He started to get into some of that stuff chefs do – foraging. The day before he died he was over in Port Alley Cove foraging and he had just made a soup from what he found.”

“He was an absolutely super young fella and will be missed greatly by his family and friends.”

“The dog stayed with him until somebody happened to walk down to the beach, and the dog kept on barking at the person, until the person went to follow the dog over.

“The dog was in distress and they went over and I think Jake was actually probably dead at that stage.”

Mr O’Neill added that he didn’t think the accident was because of the recent storms as the cove was well sheltered from the wind and waves: “He just slipped on the rocks and hit his head. You don’t expect your son to go out for a walk with the dog and not come back.”

A post-mortem will be carried out today and the garda are investigating the circumstances surrounding Jake’s death. A spokesman said: “It’s an unfortunate incident where it would appear that the man may have slipped.”