Dog in boat capsized is found ALIVE in a Sydney Harbour cave

Dog who went missing with his owner after their boat capsized is found ALIVE in a Sydney Harbour cave – as desperate search for missing man continues

  • Dog is found alive after a boat capsized in rough seas off Sydney Harbour
  • A desperate search and rescue operation is still underway to locate its owner
  • Local band helped rescue the pooch who had been in the water for seven hours 


A dog has made a miraculous escape by swimming to shore after a boat capsized but a desperate search is still trying to locate the pet’s owner.

Darren Huber, 49, and the pooch headed out of Sydney Harbour to test drive a 3.5m runabout with the vessel’s owner Forest Kousal, 25.

But at about 3am on Saturday the boat capsized in rough seas off Dobroyd Head near the entrance of the harbour, sending the two men and the dog into the water.

The dog was washed away immediately but both men clung to the boat for hours before Mr Huber drifted away. 

Mr Kousal was spotted by a local fisherman shortly before 4.50am on Saturday and was pulled to safety.

But to the surprise of search and rescue personnel, the dog also made it back to shoreside cave after spending about seven hours doggy-paddling in the water.

A dog (pictured with rescuer Dylan Goodearl) has made a miraculous escape by swimming to shore after a boat capsized but a desperate search is still trying to locate the pet’s owner

A surf life saver on a jet ski located the dog at nearby Cave Beach about 11am and alerted local band, Eagle Eye Jones, who were celebrating a birthday on the sand nearby.

They immediately stopped making pancakes to join the life savers and help the exhausted and terrified dog.

Band member Dylan Goodearl, 26, said the frightened dog looked ‘very scared’ and had its tail between his legs.   

‘We climbed down into the cave and saw him there,’ he told the Manly Observer.

‘He was very scared. We gave him some pancakes and water. The cops and life guards came down and we helped hoist the dog up from the rocks using a towel’

Darren Huber, 49, (pictured) is still missing after going for a test drive in a 3.5m runabout off Sydney Harbour

Darren Huber, 49, (pictured) is still missing after going for a test drive in a 3.5m runabout off Sydney Harbour

Despite the miraculous tale of survival, its owner is still missing as the search headed up by Water Police and Surf Life Saving NSW continues.

Police said Mr Huber has been living in a camper van on the North Shore and has not returned to the site, dashing hopes he may have got out of the water.

The pair launched the vessel from Tunks Park boat ramp at Northbridge about 9pm the previous evening, before running into rough seas and capsizing some time around 3am.    

Inspector Andrew Veale said the boat’s fuel tank and rubber mats were earlier recovered two nautical miles off the coast.          

The two men have known each other for about two years, and the 49-year-old was interested in buying the boat from his younger friend.

Local Manly band called Eagle Eye Jones (pictured) were by the water making pancakes as part of a birthday celebration when live savers called out for the rock'n rollers to help.

Local Manly band called Eagle Eye Jones (pictured) were by the water making pancakes as part of a birthday celebration when live savers called out for the rock’n rollers to help.

There were no life jackets, lights or safety gear on board when the pair set off, but search and rescue teams are not giving up hope of finding the missing fisherman alive.

‘We’re hoping for the best,’ Mr Veale said. ‘This is a timely reminder about safety on the waterways.

‘This vessel had no life jackets. I encourage anyone to research where you are going and make sure you have the appropriate safety equipment.’   

Mr Kousal is recovering at home after being treated for hypothermia and injuries to his wrist. 

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