Saturday Stories – Swansea Jack the Life Saver

Swansea Jack

Image by Rhodri77 [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], from Wikimedia Commons

This week’s Saturday Story features a black Retriever named Jack (nicknamed ‘Swansea Jack’) from the 1930s. Jack lived in the North Dock/River Tawe area of Swansea with his master, William Thomas.

One day Jack saw a small boy drowning in the River Tawe, and fearlessly jumped in to rescue him. With some effort, Jack managed to drag the boy to shore by the scruff of his neck and saved his life. Sadly, there was no-one around to witness this and nobody believed the boy’s story, meaning Jack didn’t receive the credit deserved.

But Jack wasn’t done. A few weeks later, Jack witnessed another swimmer drowning and immediately dived in again to save his life. Thankfully, this time there were witnesses in attendance. A few weeks later Jack did the same again. And again. And again. And again. Over the course of a decade, he always responded to cries for help from the water, and it is reported that Jack saved at least 27 people from drowning in the river.

Jack’s bravery is still recognised today, as he’s thought to be the inspiration for the nickname of local Swansea people, the ‘Swansea Jacks’.Finally receiving the recognition he so deserved, Jack was given a multitude of rewards, including:

  • A silver collar for his efforts by Swansea Council
  • Photograph in the local paper
  • ‘Bravest Dog of the Year Award’
  • A silver cup from the Mayor of London
  • His very own statue on the promenade near St.Helen’s Rugby Ground

At Bowerland Holiday Cottages and Devon Dogs we provide specialist training workshops to help dogs with a variety of issues. Why not come along to one of our workshops, and help your dog be like Swansea Jack!

Read more Saturday Stories HERE.

Chris Green

About the Author: Chris Green works in the office at Bowerland Cottage Holidays and Devon Dogs, using his technical expertise to assist wherever needed. In his spare time he likes playing guitar and bass, and hiking around Dartmoor.

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