A 67-year-old man died after falling down a 500-foot cliff while he was trying to rescue his dog at Thornton State Beach in Daly City on Monday.
Authorities said the man’s dog got away from him, and when he tried to go after the pet he slipped to his death.
Long after the fatal fall, the man’s dog continued pacing and barking on a perch as crews worked to rescue him or her.
“The dog knows if you are hurt and sometimes with the cliff they get overstimulated and don’t know all the facts,” dog walker Kyle Moreno told San Francisco television station KPIX.
The area is popular for dog walkers.
Tedd Leblanc of Daly City and his friends were out hiking in the scenic area Monday. He noted that the terrain is steep.
“Sometimes things can move around. You gotta be careful. Always be on alert because rocks can tumble,” he said.
Rescuers airlifted the man’s body from the bottom of the cliff. Later, they helped the dog get back up the steep cliff and gave the canine to the victim’s family.
Park rangers say there are no leash laws in place, but advise dog walkers to put their animals on a leash or make sure they respond to voice control.