A HERO Greenock paramedic saved the life of a giant labrador that had choked and collapsed on the street — after scoffing a whole roll in one go.

Quick-thinking Ernie Pyper was waiting in a traffic queue when he spotted black lab Monty in big trouble and jumped out of his ambulance to help.

As Monty fell to the ground and stopped breathing the 50-year-old ambulance man put his life-saving skills into practice by trying to dislodge the roll from the lifeless 38-kilo pooch.

Evening Times:

Ernie Pyper and Paul McIntosh. Picture by George Munro

His team partner Paul McIntosh was at his back and giving Monty oxygen.

Relieved Ernie managed to dislodge the roll down into the 12-year-old dog’s stomach and save the dog’s life, reports the Greenock Telegraph

Ernie, aged 50, who is based at the Greenock Ambulance Station, said: “I have been a paramedic for 26 years and I have never, ever had to step in to save a dog before!

“We were waiting at a set of traffic lights and I watched the dog trying to get to a full bread roll and his owner struggling to pull him back. 

“The dog just swallowed it all in one go then I noticed that he fell to the ground.

“I just jumped out of the ambulance and I thought ‘this dog isn’t going to survive’.

“He wasn’t breathing.

“The roll was at the back of his throat and blocking his airwaves. 

“I couldn’t get the roll up the way but I started to massage it to try to push it down to his stomach.

“Somehow it dislodged and he started wagging his tail and came round.

“It took him a couple of minutes and he was back on his feet.

“He was a lovely dog — a big softie.”

Ernie and Paul made sure that there was a vet nearby and then jumped back in their ambulance to get on with their busy day.

They had been transporting a patient to hospital from Kilwinning last Monday when the drama unfolded.

Dog lover Ernie, who lives in Skelmorlie, said: “It is a day I will never forget.

“I am just glad that he is okay.

“All the traffic was stopped.

“I have a dog myself, a wee Yorkshire terrier, and I had to do something. I couldn’t watch something happen to a dog.”
Monty’s owner Julie McLaughlin, 47, who lives near Kilwinning, today paid tribute to Ernie and Paul.

She said: “If it wasn’t for them Monty would be dead. There is no doubt about it.

“He had stopped breathing and there was no movement. 

“I could never thank them enough for what they did.

“I panicked and I was shouting for help. 

“Monty is a big greedy labrador who loves his food.

“He spotted the roll lying on the ground and the more I tried to stop him, the more he wanted it.

“He just gobbled it all then started to sway and then he collapsed.

“I saw the ambulanceman coming and he was doing like a Heimlich manoeuvre.

“I couldn’t believe it when Monty came round.

“He is going to be 13 in January and it is just me and him.

“He is just like a big teddy bear —everyone loves him.

“I have had him since he was a puppy and I don’t know what I would do without him.”