Feb 04

Dog reaches Everest base camp

Dog reaches Everest Base camp at 5300m

Rupee has claimed the title of being the first dog to reach Everest base camp. Read up on the amazing journey of both him and his adopted owner

Ok, so it looks like Edmund Hilary has come back as a dog. Only this time, he decided to go by a different name-Rupee.

Poor old Rupee was a stray living off the scraps of a dumpsite in Ladakh, Northern India. and was said to be less than an hour away from kicking the proverbial bucket before he was found. And now he has become the highest  dog in the world. And by high, we don’t mean he was kicking back on the local acid and singing songs about small orange dots that eat ping pong balls.


Rupee was adopted Joanne Lefson when he was about 8 months old., according to the U.K. Daily Mail. She nursed him back to health on a diet of boiled eggs and rice. He was severely malnourished and dehydrated.


Lefson then decided to go walkies with Rufee, I mean Rupee. But not a normal walk around the block like most normal people do. Nope she decided to take the dog up to Everest base camp in the Himalayas.

She originally wanted to climb to base camp with her first dog, Oscar, who has travelled  to 36 countries on five continents as Lefson promoted efforts to find homes for stray dogs.

Tragically, Oscar was killed in a car accident on January 11 in California.

Before the Everest trek with Rupee, Lefson, who is from Cape Town, South Africa, and is half-British, first checked with a veterinarian to make sure the dog would not suffer from altitude sickness at the base camp’s high elevation. Since the dog was born in the Himalayas, however, the vet assured her it would be fine.

“My greatest concern was wondering if Rupee could actually make it,” Lefson told the Daily Mail. “I prepared for the worst and arranged an extra porter just in case Rupee needed to hitch a ride.”


Rupee had his own porter in case he got tired during the 10-day trek to Mount Everest base camp; photo from Caters News Agency used by permission

Rupee, Lefson, and Mumbai filmmaker Dev Argarwel, who shot the expedition, made the trek in 10 days to the famous Mount Everest base camp. It is uncertain exactly when they completed the adventure, but the news of the feat is apparently just now getting out.

“A memorable part of the trip was seeing Rupee touch and walk on snow for the first time,” Lefson told the Daily Mail. “He loved it. He played in it at every opportunity, chased it, and even tried to chew it at times.”

Lefson told the news outlet that many tourists they encountered along the way couldn’t believe that a dog was heading to base camp.

“They were jealous they hadn’t brought their dogs with them for walkies too,” she said.

Lefson stated on the Oscar World Woof Tour Facebook page that her goal is raising South Africa’s adoption rates, which are less than 10 percent, to 100 percent. It is apparent that Lefson will continue her work with Rupee by her side.

“Rupee is simply an extension of Oscar’s legacy and a fine example of what can be achieved when a homeless dog is given a second chance,” she said.


On the way to Mount Everest base camp; photo from Caters News Agency used by permission


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