A JAPAN Coast Guard elite rescue unit has picked up a dog that was adrift at sea on a house roof off the nation's tsunami-battered northeast coast, an official said today.
A helicopter crew on Friday spotted the floppy-eared dark brown animal adrift 2km from Kesennuma, a port town severely hit in the March 11 disaster, according to the coastguard official.
A member of a highly trained rescue unit nicknamed the "sea monkeys" by the Japanese public was lowered from the helicopter to catch the dog, but the engine roar scared it and it jumped to another piece of flotsam, he said.
"These rescuers are very specialised," he said. "They found the dog again from a boat and finally managed to rescue it."
The mid-sized dog, whose sex was not released, wore a collar and seemed to have been a house pet, the official said.