Toby, a 2-year-old golden retriever, really is man's best friend — or in this case, woman's.
Debbie Parkhurst, a 45-year-old jewelry artist who lives in Calvert, Md., says her dog Toby saved her life last week after she began to choke on a piece of apple by giving her the Heimlich maneuver, the Cecil Whig reported.
Parkhurst was home alone Friday afternoon eating a snack of sliced apples when one became lodged in her windpipe. After smacking herself against a chair to dislodge it, she started beating herself on the chest, which she thinks alerted Toby to the problem.
"The next think I know, Toby’s up on his hind feet and he’s got his front paws on my shoulders," she told the Cecil Whig. "He pushed me to the ground, and once I was on my back, he began jumping up and down on my chest."
The apple eventually became loose and Toby started licking her face, possibly to keep her from passing out, Parkhurst said.
"I, literally, have pawprint-shaped bruises on my chest," Parkhurst said. "I’m still a little hoarse, but otherwise, I’m OK."
A friend took Parkhurst to the doctor.
"The doctor said I probably wouldn’t be here without Toby," the married woman and owner of two dogs said. "I keep looking at him and saying ‘You’re amazing.’"