‘Who doesn’t like bologna sandwiches?’ State trooper uses lunch to rescue runaway dog from highway

MIAMI COUNTY — A bologna sandwich and some pieces of ham were credited with helping calm a skittish dog found running on I-75 in Miami County last week before a state trooper was able to corral it to safety.

Sgt. Jeff Kramer of the Piqua Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol was on I-75 near Tipp City when they got the call of an animal running on the highway Feb. 17 around 8 a.m.

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“For us, any kind of animal on the roadway does cause a significant risk of causing a problem. So we don’t take them too lightly,” Kramer told News Center 7′s John Bedell Wednesday.

“I happened to be in the area, went to the area looking for it around the Tipp City area, but didn’t see it. So I continued south and turned around there at the Northwoods Boulevard and as I was coming up that little dog was just running up the shoulder of the interstate towards me. So I was in a good position, so I thought ‘well heck let’s see what I can do,’” Kramer said.

Traffic issues had already started to form on I-75 with cars slamming on their brakes and making quick lane changes to avoid the dog.

“As I’m coming up to it, you could see some traffic issues start – people hitting their brakes real hard, making real quick lane changes. And that’s where the significant risk is. Nobody wants to hit an animal especially a dog, so I knew we should try to get this dog,” he said.

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As Kramer pulled up a woman stopped to help who was already out in the area looking for the dog.

“As soon as I was there, some people on a local Facebook group, missing dogs of that area, were reporting this dog all over the place so people were actually out looking for it. And I was fortunate enough that one particular lady really had the passion and desire to make sure we got this dog because the temperatures were in the single digits, it was really cold,” Kramer said.

But the dog was very skittish and snapped at Kramer and the woman who stopped whenever they got close to the dog.

“It took us a while to get it even close to it. And I was kind of thinking ‘how are we going to get it once we got there’ because it was kind of snippy, it would kind of bite at you when you got close,” he said.

Kramer took a rope he had that was connected to his set of stop sticks, a tire deflation device, unclipped it from the device and used it as a leash.

“We were able to get that around the dog’s neck and secure it and we were able to get the Montgomery County Animal Resource Center out there to get it from us to somewhere warm and get the dog food and try to find the owner of it,” Kramer said.

To help calm the dog enough to get the leash around its neck, Kramer took out his baloney sandwich he packed for lunch and used some slices of ham the woman had with her.

“I mean, who doesn’t like bologna sandwiches, right? Baloney and ham apparently is this dog’s favorite. The lady had some ham slices. We were able to use both,” Kramer said.

The dog was transferred to the Montgomery County ARC, and later went to SICSA in Washington Twp. where she is still being cared for. As of Wednesday afternoon the dog’s owner had not been located but she is not up for adoption right now.

Kramer credited the Facebook group and other concerned citizens for this story having a positive outcome.

“It’s kind of heart warming to know that there’s so many people that care. These Facebook groups. They’re there for a reason to report dogs and all that,” Kramer said.

However he warned people it is very dangerous to try to corral a dog on any busy stretch of roadway.

“When there’s animals on the highway, especially this dog that’s on Facebook and everybody’s concerned about it, it’s probably not the best practice to go out yourself to try to retrieve the dog. Certainly that’s a 911 call. Especially when it’s on the interstate because again the potential for traffic issues,” he said.

“We had several people stopping and try to help and stuff and it’s very appreciated. But then that adds to the risk of the officers when you’re on the side of the highway, that’s never a safe area,” Kramer said.

He added that he and the bystander who stopped to help were lucky because the dog was behind a large section of guardrail.

“But if we were a little farther north or south we would have been exposed, not had that guardrail.”

Kramer said he was grateful for the appreciation from the public during this call and that it ended with a successful outcome.

“That’s the nice part about our job. I wouldn’t expect that’s what I’d have been doing with that unknown and uncertainty from call to call to call. When you can do something nice, it’s nice to have that opportunity,” he said.