Rescue dog retires after saving 14 lives

Mij known as Britain's 'real-life Lassie' during 7-year career

Published On: Jun 25 2013 12:59:09 PM EDT   Updated On: Jun 27 2013 10:34:16 AM EDT
Mij the rescue dog

A rescue dog known as Britain's "real-life Lassie" is retiring after saving 14 lives.

Mij, a 10-year-old Welsh collie, led more than 200 search and rescue missions during her seven-year career, becoming known as the country's most dependable rescue dog, The Telegraph reported.

Born with health problems, she was nearly put to sleep when she couldn't keep up in search-and-rescue training classes.

But her handler, Iain Nicholson, refused to give up and helped Mij become a star student.

The pair is now a pioneering duo, becoming the first human-canine team in the United Kingdom to successfully follow the trail of a person missing for more than 24 hours, according to The Daily Mail.

"The woman Mij saved would never have been found, but thanks to her she was rushed to hospital and made a full recovery," Nicholson said of his canine companion.

No word on Mij's plans for retirement.

Nicholson, one of the U.K.'s leading rescue dog trainers, is now using Mij's success to rear the new generation of rescue dogs.