An Australian paraglider and his pet chihuahua were left dangling from a tree more than 100 feet above the ground after a joy flight went horribly wrong.
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Peruvian surfing cat is making waves Paul Hansen, 42, strapped four-year-old Emma to his chest in a simple cloth sling and launched the paraglider from Warburton, near Melbourne, about 5pm Friday, but became entangled in a tree shortly after take-off.
Watch: Police rescue Paul Hansen and his dogHe used his mobile phone to send text messages to friends who alerted police.
Emergency services dispatched a helicopter and made contact with Mr Hansen on his UHF radio.
Police, firefighters and emergency service volunteers tramped through thick bushland before finding him about 6.15pm, snagged in branches of a mountain ash tree.
Officers climbed the tree and fitted a harness to Mr Hansen, who suffers from cancer and was in pain without his medication, and lowered him to safety.
"I couldn't get anyone on the radio. All I could hear was chatter about the cricket and people were talking about their Friday night, but no one could hear me," he told Melbourne's Sunday Age newspaper.
"I was pretty worried. I was very cold and I didn't have any pain medication.
"I've been fighting cancer for the past seven years and I was starting to go into withdrawals because I'm on a fairly high dose of morphine for the tumour pain.
"I normally don't take anything with me if I'm going flying, but by the time I was hanging up there well into the evening it was getting pretty painful."
Mr Hansen's main concern was for Emma, who had slipped out of her harness during the crash.
"It took me nearly an hour to put it back on her because of the precarious way we were perched. She knew that we were in danger, but she didn't panic or anything.
"She always flies with me. She loves it. I wouldn't take her if she didn't like it.
"She goes everywhere with me, so she's used to being in some pretty radical situations. She's a pretty awesome little chihuahua."
Apart from some minor cuts, which were treated by ambulance officers, the only thing damaged during the five-hour ordeal was Mr Hansen's pride.
"It's pretty embarrassing to see the amount of trouble that's been taken for me," Mr Hansen said.
"I'm just so grateful that we've got these sort of people. Imagine if this was in some part of woop woop," he said, using Australian slang for remote bushland.
Senior Sergeant Paul McBride said the rescue was long and difficult.
"He's done a fantastic job himself to maintain his composure at such a height in the trees," he said.
Mr Hansen said he was considering selling his paragliding equipment and donating the proceeds to volunteer emergency service workers.