Dominic Jeffries: Lost 7-year-old boy hugged his dog to keep warm in sub-zero temperatures

Dominic Jeffries clung to Coco after it dragged him away during a walk

Kashmira Gander
Monday 17 February 2014 11:25 GMT
A shitzu similar to the one that Dominic Jeffries hugged to stay warm
A shitzu similar to the one that Dominic Jeffries hugged to stay warm (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

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Louise Thomas

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A 7-year-old boy cuddled his pet dog to survive freezing temperatures when he got lost in the US state of Tennessee.

Dominic Jeffries had taken his dog Coco for a walk in his front garden in Cordova, when she pulled him away.

When they both fell behind a cement retainer that was hidden by a bush, Dominic was left trapped for 14 hours ABC News reported.

Unable to climb out and only wearing a camouflage jacket and a fur hat, Dominic's dog kept him warm while he waited for help.

His guardian Robbyne Manning said that despite teams repeatedly searching the area where Dominic was stuck, he did not respond to his name because he saw police lights and thought he was in trouble.

“He said he heard us and saw the blue lights and thought he was in trouble. When he used to be with his parents, blue lights mean you’re in trouble,” his legal guardian Robbyne Manning told ABC News.

Manning said Dominic hugged Coco, a black Shih Tzu, but as the night wore on, the dog started to get cold too, so Dominic took off his jacket to warm it up.

When he became worried that the dog would get too cold, Dominic released her leash in the hope that she would go home and get help.

Dominic endured the cold alone for a further three hours.

Eventually as daylight broke, a police officer spotted Dominic.

“He was just happy,” Manning said of Dominic when he was found.

“The police talked to him and said not all the time [do blue lights] mean you’re in trouble," she added.

After his ordeal Dominic received a badge from the police, and told Manning he wants to be a police officer to help “people who get lost.”

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