BELEN, N.M. (KRQE) – A little dog is being hailed a hero for saving his much larger buddy. One dachshund’s persistence led to a dramatic water rescue of a St. Bernard.

Belen firefighters and police officers raced to the rescue to save Tim Chavez’s St. Bernard named Jazzy. Chavez believes the 180-pound dog was stuck in a cold, muddy ditch for about 18 hours.

Chavez’s tiny dachshund named Razor is credited with making the rescue happen.

Sunday afternoon, the 9-year-old St. Bernard got loose. By Monday, Chavez had to go to work, and in retrospect, Chavez realizes Razor was trying to let him know that something was wrong.

“I went to feed him, and he was kind of going crazy, trying to get my attention,” Chavez said.

Razor kept trying to alert others to something, as he barked at the neighbor too.

“He noticed that Razor was kind of running amok, and just causing a scene and trying to get this attention,” Chavez said.

It was all for good reason because Jazzy was in a bad predicament.

“Razor took off through the field, along the irrigation ditch, and showed up here,” Chavez told KRQE News 13, at the location where Jazzy was in danger. “This is the spot Jazzy was actually stuck in, she was stuck here at least two feet stuck into the mud,” he recalled.

A passerby followed Razor and saw Jazzy in the ditch. Next thing you know, eight Belen police and firefighters were pulling off a ditch rescue. Using backboard straps and a long spine board, just like they would for a person, rescuers saved the big dog.

“It’s never happened in my career, and in this business, we see a lot of things. This is the first time that we participated in something like this,” said Manny Garcia, Belen’s fire chief. “This is a great story. One I think that is very unique, and one that animal lovers across our state will love,” he said.

“We’re used to rescuing humans, and when it comes to somebody’s pet, it’s just like a family member,” Garcia added. “What makes it unique is the people in Belen care for each other,” Garcia said.

Lt. Joe Portio with the Belen Police Department said two things are important for officers on duty. “Public safety is rule number one, and preservation of life, whether it’s going to be an animal or human being,” said Portio.

Chavez is grateful his four-legged friend is now home.

“It really means a lot. You don’t really realize how attached you are to your pets until something like this happens,” he said.

But Chavez’s pit bull terrier named Layla also ran away from home with Jazzy and is still missing. He hopes to find her soon.

Meantime, the Belen City Council will honor Razor for his actions at the March 2 meeting.