Page last updated at 14:25 GMT, Wednesday, 16 September 2009 15:25 UK

Cows force man and dog into river

The man was given advice about how to scare off the cows

A man walking his dog has been forced into the River Thames in Oxfordshire for more than an hour to escape a herd of cows.

He was walking along the towpath near Radcot when the cows chased him.

The man, from London, called police at 1745 BST on Tuesday to ask for help. At one point the police helicopter was on standby to help find him.

Thames Valley Police said a Pc with cow herding experience and advised the man about how to disperse the animals.

Pc Jude Miranda said: "We'd been talking to the control room trying to get a better location for the man and the only thing that I could think of was my father in law some years ago.

"He worked on a farm, he said that you've got to stand up to the cows, make yourself look big, and start waving your hands in the air, and not to cower away from it."

The police control room passed on Pc Miranda's advice to the man who was then able to get out of the river.

He then met police officers waiting for him at the Swan Hotel, Radcot, who checked he was all right and they left him at around 1845 BST.

He had been in the river for about 20 minutes before he called the police.

Pc Miranda said: "I've never come across something quite as strange as this before, I've never heard of cows chasing a man into a river."

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